Type ‘employee engagement ideas’ into your favorite search engine and you’ll get a plethora to choose from. Employee engagement is the holy grail of enlightened business management these days, and it has nothing to do with a surly bridge-keeper or the colour blue. In fact, it’s not all about the money, either.
Aside from appropriate compensation, getting your employees to actively engage doesn’t have to be expensive. One of the biggest factors in employee engagement is company culture: large or small, multi-billion dollar enterprise or just clearing the profit margin, employees want to work at a place that cares about them. Not a collective them or ‘those workers’ or ‘my minions’ – as individuals.
How can you show your employees that your company does, in fact, care about their wellbeing?
Ideally, you could have a lounge area with comfy napping stations, free spa time, an in-house gourmet chef preparing three meals a day, and a choice selection of video games. Add in extra holidays, a generous quarterly bonus, and the ability to take your dog to work, and you’ve got a winner.
Now back to reality – for 99.99% of us, that’s not possible. Instead, we have to balance employee engagement ideas with our budget, resources and business objectives.
There are two things that employee engagement ideas should convey: gratitude for your worker’s efforts and regard for them as human beings. Consider the flip side, employee disengagement. Disengaged, disgruntled employees usually work in a place where rules are rules but roles are constantly changing, where it’s dog eat dog but humans get no real lunch break, and where their efforts aren’t only unsung, they’re constantly being asked to increase them. It’s a formula for discontent if ever there was one.
So flip it. Instead of hard-and-fast rules, consider flexibility. Clarify goals and expectations. Appreciate effort. Show gratitude. That’s right; gratitude. Your employees are using a chunk of their time for you. And yes, they’re getting paid to do it, but they could be working for your competitor. When they’ve done a good job for you, say thanks. It is, literally, the least you can do.
If you’re like many of our customers, you’re probably all about these ideas, at least in theory. But how can you put them into practice?
Employee engagement ideas like these are not going to break your budget, but they will show your workers that they do matter.
Mike Symonds is the owner of Interactive Events and Creator of Funergizers. Known as the Chief Funergizer, Mike specialises in helping business leaders create energized, connected and engaging team cultures.
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