By now, your company should be well aware that employee engagement activities are critical for the success of the business.
For example, companies with engaged employees see 233% greater customer loyalty and a 26% greater annual increase in revenue. (Aberdeen)
But employee engagement also greatly impacts your employees. You want your organizations’ employees to be interested in their jobs, to feel as though they’re part of the team, and impact the success of the company.
Yet, even though there are plenty of employee engagement activities out there from all the research, there are also a lot of myths surrounding how to engage employees. And quite a few “facts” that people think are true, really aren’t.
Why Employee Engagement Still Matters
The statistic right from the intro will make your executives ears perk up, but most probably are well aware of the impact of employee engagement.
But why after all these years, are employee engagement activities still so important to companies? Well, even with all the data, employees can quickly become disengaged affecting all areas of the business.
And worse yet, many companies do not spend as much effort as they should or are focused on the wrong things (like we’ll cover in the next section). Either way, the concept still matters today and will matter for the foreseeable future.
And some recent stats, still prove that employee engagement is a challenge. Here are a few additional insights:
- Only 15% of employees worldwide are engaged in their jobs. (Gallup)
- 37% of engaged employees are looking for jobs or are open to new opportunities, as are 56% of not engaged employees and 73% of actively disengaged employees. (Gallup)
- More than 80% of workers are either actively looking for a new job or are open to one (PRNewswire)
This is only a select few, but even thought employee engagement is known to be valuable, the stats show there still is not enough emphasis or quality from company’s efforts.
Related: We’ve asked 21 digital media, social, and transformational leaders to share their toughest lessons learned, keys to success, and emerging opportunities in employee engagement. Download the guide.
Employee Engagement Activities Everyone Thinks Are True
The challenge is, there are some employee engagement activities that are not exactly entirely true, but being used as facts.
Avoiding them can help you foster true engagement with your employees and ensure your company does not fall into some of the dismal statistics out there.
1. Your company can engage employees with an ideal working environment
You may be able to engage some employees with a working environment that they find to be close to ideal, but overall you’re not going to please everyone all the time.
What might be an ideal environment for one employee could be a terrible environment for another one. Other things will have to keep employees engaged besides your workplace environment.
Of course, your company should work to having a nice work environment regardless, but don’t think that will entirely solve any lack of employee engagement.
2. Employees will become engaged through team building
They might…but then again they might not. People are all different, and the same is true for jobs and working environments.
The team building efforts that work for one company may do nothing for another company with a very different group of people.
Similarly to creating an ideal work environment, there’s nothing wrong with trying team building. It is a great way to get employees more interactive and familiar with other departments. But there’s no guarantee that your employees will become more engaged as a result of any team building activities.
3. Compensation is the main thing that drives employees
If they don’t have much money for basic needs of life, then sure. Pay employees more and they may be more driven in their work.
For employees who already have enough, though, compensating them more may not make their engagement any stronger. Everyone wants to make more money, but it doesn’t mean the monetary value will have any effect on their engagement.
Find out what else matters to them, and consider offering them that instead of just something more financial. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t pay them fairly and offer raises, just note that money does not equal increased employee engagement.
4. Keeping employees engaged is just a passing trend
Employee engagement isn’t a fad and by now, you’d think most companies and their executives recognize this. But, there are still leaders of organizations who view the idea of employee engagement as trend.
But it’s something that needs to continue for companies to be successful. The more easily employees can become – and stay – engaged with their job and company, the more they can help the company succeed while enjoying the work they do.
The studies and statistics over the years prove how valuable having your organization highly engaged is for productivity, revenue, customer success, employee retention, and more.
5. Employees don’t have to be engaged to do a good job
Yes, they really do. If they aren’t engaged with the company and the work they are doing, their job performance is going to suffer. They may do the bare minimum to get by, not take on extra work, not care about the company mission, etc.
The bottom line is that employees should and need to care about what they’re doing, and without engagement they don’t care enough to make sure they’re giving their best to the company they work for.
Disengaged employees damage productivity, job performance, and can negatively impact company morale of those around them.
6. You won’t feel overwhelmed if you’re engaged
You still will. People always do. Work can feel overwhelming, at least some of the time. It’s normal and expected.
That doesn’t mean you can’t be engaged with the work you’re doing, though, or that you aren’t going to get anything good out of your time with the company.
Take a breath, and get things done. Staying engaged can help you do that, and help you feel more relaxed.
How to Improve Employee Engagement Through Employee Advocacy
A big question for companies, is how they can improve employee engagement? When employees are focused and excited about their work, your company will reap the benefits.
One way brands are increasing employee engagement is by leveraging employee advocacy. This strategy focuses on creating a team of brand advocates, sharing content to their social networks, but also being informed of the latest news.
Of course, this only works if you already have a team of engaged works. If they are disengaged, they probably do not care about your employee advocacy initiatives. Work on your company culture and ensuring your company’s employee genuinely care about the company and their work.
If you do have a great team of many engaged employees, employee advocacy can take your engagement levels to new heights.
But, how does that actually improve employee engagement?
- Employees are more informed of company content, news, and industry happenings. According to a previous Gartner study, more informed employees outperform their peers by 77%.
- Your entire organization and employees that are involved in the advocacy software, help contribute to the success of the company in other ways outside of their job duties.
- Employee advocacy helps incentivize and acknowledge employees contributions, efforts, and ideas. Your company can highlight and show appreciation for your brand advocates, which may inspire other employees to get more involved.
Lastly, some statistics around the effects of employee advocacy and employee engagement:
- 92% of employees say that having the technology to do their job efficiently affects their work satisfaction. (Ultimate Software)
- When companies use social media internally, messages become content; a searchable record of knowledge can reduce, by as much as 35%, the time employees spend searching for company information. (McKinsey)
- Employees of socially engaged companies are more likely to stay at their company, feel optimistic about their company’s future and believe their company is more competitive. (Prophet)