While it may be every manager’s dream to wake up each morning and find their team eager, energized, and completely focused on their day ahead, this is simply not realistic. The truth is, it takes a lot of thought and effort to keep employees motivated and engaged. That said, employee engagement is one of the key factors to running a successful business. Employees that are engaged are happier in their jobs which leads to increased productivity. Research has clearly shown that employees that are engaged in the workplace have a greater likelihood of sticking around for the long haul. Therefore, it is critical that managers find creative ways to keep their employees motivated and engaged. Here are some tips that will help you master employee engagement within your organization.
Get to Know Them Personally
This sounds simple and it is! Spending time with your employees and getting to know them is a simple yet effective way to keep them engaged. It is important that you see your employees as more than just a number or what they bring to the table. Take the time to learn more about their families, hobbies, interests, backgrounds, and personal goals. This will help you build a strong rapport with them and it lets them know you care about them as an individual.
Provide Them with the Tools to Succeed
As a manager it is your job to oversee the daily operations within your team. However, it is also your job to make sure your employees have the tools and resources they need to succeed. For starters, ensure they have adequate training so they feel confident in what they are doing. Be willing to provide additional training and coaching as needed. Furthermore, invest in their potential by providing opportunities for professional development. This will give them the foundation they need to continue growing.
Recognize and Reward Your Employees
If employees don’t feel appreciated for their hard work, it’s unlikely that they will be motivated to be more productive. A lack of recognition will undoubtedly lead to disengagement. Therefore, take the time to recognize and reward your employees for their efforts. This is one of the most motivating things a manager can do, and oftentimes it doesn’t cost a thing. A simple “thank you for your hard work,” an email, or verbal recognition during a team meeting can go a long way in making employees feel valued and appreciated. You can also take it a step further and offer incentives for excellent performance. Recognition helps to foster a positive culture in the workplace which is a key factor in elevating engagement.
Provide Regular Feedback
It’s important to check in with your employees on a regular basis and provide feedback. One of the best ways to do this is by scheduling one-on-one meetings to discuss challenges, successes, priorities, responsibilities, and professional development. This is a great way to provide constructive feedback or to offer support to employees. Your employees want to know how they are doing and regular check-ins are essential for keeping those lines of communication open.
Offer Flexible Scheduling
Today’s workforce is far more inclined to choose a job that offers some degree of flexibility. Employees want a healthy work/life balance and gone are the days of spending 40 hours a week sitting in an office. A great way to increase productivity and engagement is to offer flexible work schedules. Give employees the opportunity to work remotely, take more personal time, and reduce their hours in the office. Employees who have more freedom and flexibility with their work schedule are more likely to have greater job satisfaction than those with a rigid schedule. Furthermore, such flexibility empowers employees to work more efficiently on their own schedule, which can actually lead to greater productivity.
Blend Work and Fun
A job that is all work and no play is not going to be enticing to anyone. Oftentimes employees disengage because of the monotony of their job. Shake things up a little bit and give your employees something to look forward to. It can be something as simple as casual Friday, themed dress-up days, pot-luck lunches, or even catered breakfast once a month. You might even schedule out of work team building activities. When you give your employees a break and allow them to do something fun for a change, it can make their job more enjoyable and ultimately increase their engagement.