Most companies with employees are starting to realize that their results are nothing without their people. This is especially true for large and enterprise businesses, but this can be said for any sized organization.
Since the competition among businesses is fierce (especially with the digital advances), organizations need to find other ways to keep the company results and brand reach growing.
And it’s exactly why your company needs to put a greater emphasis on employee involvement. Without your company’s people getting more involved and engaged, your organization and brand will quickly fall behind.
Before we dive in, here’s what will be covered in this post:
- What is Employee Involvement?
- Why Employee Involvement Matters
- Top Places of Employee Involvement
- How to Set Up A Culture of Employee Involvement
What is Employee Involvement?
Like most articles you’ll find on EveryoneSocial, some of the concepts and terminology might seem pretty basic. Meaning, you’ll probably figure out the definition just based on the words in the phrase or how we introduce it.
But as I tend to say in my posts, I always like to put our own definition behind it so we are all on the same page. That being said, what is employee involvement?
“Employee involvement is the participation of employees from all departments in various activities that help the business reach and maintain its goals, mission, and brand position. The reason a business is successful is not just on leadership, but the contributions from most – if not – ALL employees.”
Your organization must realize that when employees are engaged and know their contributions are impacting decisions and growth, they are more likely to perform higher, take pride in their work, become brand advocates, and rally around the work culture.
Why Employee Involvement Actually Matters
When your organization sets up employees to contribute their expertise and ideas, it helps foster an internal workplace community. Employee involvement helps establish that employees are not just looked at like a number that contributes to profit, but as a valuable member of a family.
But, employee involvement is also key to the success of your brand strategy, both internal and external. Your company’s brand becomes more trusted by employees and outside audiences when employees are the face of the brand.
The above two are strong reasons for an employee involvement strategy, but there are a few other solid reasons why getting employees more involved can be impactful.
Employee involvement directly improves and can increase overall productivity. When your organization’s employees are invested in the company’s best interest, they care more about their role in the company.
Their involvement in things outside their job roles create a sense of ownership and pride which is only going to benefit their company’s output.
“77% of employees agree a strong culture allows them to do their best work, 76% see the impact in productivity and efficiency, and another 74% draw a correlation between culture and their ability to serve their customer base”(Eagle Hill Consulting)
Employee retention and recruiting of top talent
When your company builds a workplace of involvement, feedback, and nurturing of professional careers, your company attracts and retains talent. Don’t forget word of mouth, which thanks to social media and networking, makes it easy for your company to attract the best talent, even when you don’t have any job openings.
Employees are more motivated to care
When you have company leadership and management encouraging employee involvement and actually put that in place, employees become more motivated. They see their work, ideas, or feedback actually being utilized and recognized. That can continue to fuel motivation and on-going performance.
Leadership and management roles are not the only people with good ideas or solutions. Letting employees contribute ideas and feedback, creates a culture of innovation. It can put your company ahead of the competition or fix internal procedures that may improve output in someway.
Many creative solutions will come from people of completely different backgrounds or departments.
Top Places of Employee Involvement
There are numerous ways to get employees more involved, the key aspect to remember is not to force anything on employees. Not everyone will be gung-ho from the start to get involved.
And that’s okay!
Below are a few areas where employee involvement can take place to have an impact on your brand, business, and overall growth.
Social media advocacy
Social media is no longer just for the marketing or sales team. In fact, 98% of employees use at least one social media site for personal use, of which 50% are already posting about their company. (Weber Shandwick). This presents a huge opportunity for your brand to reach exponential audiences from your employees networks.
Employees help your organization grow brand visibility, drive leads, generate sales, and increase employer brand and recruiting by sharing on social. This process is known as employee advocacy.
Related: Learn how Dell fostered employee involvement through an employee-driven social media and content sharing program. Download the case study.
Similar to getting employees on social media, you also have expert employees who have various knowledgeable insights worthy of sharing. Employee involvement can include people from your organization creating content on behalf of the company.
Content that is generated by employees can be anything from videos, images or blog posts, which may allude to the company’s mission, values, and overall benefits of the product or services. Learn more about employee-generated content.
Knowledge sharing sessions
“Businesses with a strong learning culture enjoy employee engagement and retention rates around 30-50% higher than those that don’t” (Robert Half).
Let employees get more involved in teaching others their skills and knowledge. This creates a more uniformed workplace, where employees are more eager to learn and teach others.
Opening knowledge sharing ensures more employees are involved with information outside of their own departments. It encourages your workforce to openly communicate with others, connect with executives, and overall feel more valued as an employee.
Your company’s employees want to feel like their knowledge and ideas matter. Give them those opportunities to share with others and you have a workforce more involved with their job and company.
How to Set Up A Culture of Employee Involvement
While you may want to get employees more involved, there has to be a work culture that makes this happen naturally. Forcing employee involvement won’t yield great results, nor should your workforce feel obligated to contribute.
That’s why building a great culture naturally creates successful employee involvement. Here’s a few ways to start setting up a culture where employees want to be get involved beyond their job duties.
Nurture career growth and opportunities
A great way to foster knowledge sharing and professional growth is through company training and workshops. This can be anything really as it relates to career development and education.
For example, training sessions and hosting workshops about social media, building personal brands, etc. You can also tap into the organization for other employees to share their expertise and teach others.
Recognize employees for their work and dedication
Just like getting noticed for great work, employee recognition on their achievements is a way to get more employees involved. Highlight them in a meeting, company newsletter, and even provide extra incentives for their contributions.
This does not have to be monetary incentives, but things that show your company’s appreciation and show support.
Value employee feedback and actually implement changes
Employees from all areas of the business have ideas, thoughts, and feedback that can be valuable to the organization. Leadership and managers are not the only ones with ideas or solutions to problems. Get feedback from people, be open to ideas and thoughts.
Not everything might be the right solution, but taking initiatives proves to employees your company is ACTUALLY listening and willing to implement changes that are not always from leadership.
Establish employee involvement from day one
A core part of the hiring process and any training of new employees should explain the value of their involvement beyond their job duties.
This also does not mean pile on more work, but should show how much your organization values their contributions to the business as a whole. Setting the foundation early and often with new hires will continue to build an employee involvement culture.
There you have it, everything about employee involvement! How is your company getting employees more involved in the business?
If you can’t answer that question, it may be a good idea to start thinking about how to do so. The benefits for the brand and business results speak for themselves.
Think about the companies that have a huge employee involvement and how well that company is doing. It’s no coincidence.