Many of us learned in the past year that we take things for granted. We are given harvests, but until they were taken away, we didn’t realize how fortunate we were. Every day, leaders around the world till the soil and plant seeds, in the hopes of an abundant harvest (increased customer satisfaction and revenue growth). One seed in the packet that is often planted – but rarely fertilized and watered – is the one labeled Employee Engagement.
Many companies conduct an annual Employee Engagement Survey, but choose to not act on the feedback. Or, they respond incorrectly by outsourcing the feedback to Human Resources or by creating Culture Action Teams (basically, groups of employees who plan the holiday party and end up being thought of as the Fun Committee).
What is the most effective way to respond? Senior Leaders must take responsibility for the culture they’ve created, listen to employee feedback, and create a strategy to re-engage their most important asset – people. Then, managers must execute on the engagement strategy in the trenches with their teams, and leaders must hold managers accountable for the results, which can be seen via subsequent surveys.
Employee engagement is not rocket science. In order to “win” in this space you must approach it methodically and strategically. The best news? Employees want to be engaged and will respond to sincere efforts on the behalf of leaders and managers to improve culture.
WHAT CAN I DO? Make 2021 the best year your organization has ever seen by re-engaging your employees. It begins with a survey to gather baseline data and know your starting point, prior to developing a strategy to address the areas where employees say you need to improve most. Ask your managers to execute on the action items, gauge progress every six months, and course correct if necessary. It really is that simple.