Employee engagement isn’t something that happens on its own. It requires initiation, and a catalyst that serves as a leader—or leaders—at a business. Higher-ups have the most influence with their employee force, and as leaders, your job is to inspire and take the first steps for others to follow. Below are five tips from your friends at Dale Carnegie Training of the Northwest to start flexing your leadership muscle and create an engaged employee workforce:
Provide Your Employees The Tools They Need — One of the first steps any business leader should take in engaging their employees is to make sure everyone has all the tools they need to perform their job. Follow this up by checking in at least once a year to make sure employees still feel properly equipped. Needs grow and change over time, so checking in helps you stay on top of things while simultaneously showing genuine interest in your employees.
Take Time to Get To Know Your Employees Better — The core of employee engagement is motivation. Employee motivation runs a vast spectrum, from simply earning a paycheck to attaining a personal sense of fulfillment from their job. By getting to know your employees better, you can learn how to help shape their work experience so it accommodates their purpose for employment, improving work conditions for them.
Acknowledge Good Performance — Nobody wants to make a mistake, but we are all human and mistakes happen. But while mistakes require acknowledgment, so, too, does good work. Without a proper balance between positive and negative commentary, most employees will become disengaged.
Respect Your Employees’ Positions — Strive to include your team in planning and decision-making. You hired your employees for their unique strengths and particular skill sets. So defer to their expertise when making a decision. Employees who feel employers respect their role in the company remain engaged and enthusiastic.
Trust Employees To Get The Job Done — Most employees are willfully productive. By allowing employees to exercise “free time” throughout the day, say, to hop online to check the news, check their e-mail, read a favorite webpage or even step outside for five minutes between assignments, their attitudes will improve drastically, leading to more engaged employees.
Remember that businesses with higher percentages of engaged employees enjoy higher percentages of success, be it in sales or customer loyalty. As a leader in your industry and at your business, it is up to you to make the effort to engage employees individually. Using a variety of different means to do so will guarantee the highest rate of success.
For more information on keeping employees engaged and happy join us for our upcoming program, “How Smart Leaders Create Engaged Employees” in Bellevue, WA, on May 3.
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