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Employee Engagement - What does it look like?

I see the term a lot and I should probably have a solid grasp on exactly what it means, but the truth is, I don’t. I found the following definition via ‘engage for success’…

“Employee engagement is a workplace approach resulting in the right conditions for all members of an organisation to give of their best each day, committed to their organisation’s goals and values, motivated to contribute to organisational success, with an enhanced sense of their own well-being.”

I don’t know about you, but to me, that’s just good management, both the noun and the verb. A good manager, with a good grasp of how to manage will promote all of that with their staff.

So, what do companies themselves need to do in order to maintain an engaged workforce?

Well, to promote or hire and then crucially, train their managers in the best possible way for starters. All too often we hear of managers who were made managers purely because of their ability in their previous role rather than because they have the attributes of a good manager.

I’ve worked with some outstanding recruiters in the past who made terrible managers, as well as middle-of-the-road recruiters who made fantastic managers. We all have our strengths and weaknesses. The outstanding recruiters who want to take the step into management need the training to become great managers, the same of course is true in all industries and disciplines.

Besides that, employee engagement just requires engagement. Seek feedback, good or bad, and more importantly, act on it. Involve your staff in decision-making wherever possible. Communicate goals and how individuals are able to contribute to them. Staff who feel like they’re given a role in a goal will work hard to ensure they contribute effectively.

So basically, yeah, hire or promote and train great managers, who manage well, and then engage. Good job it wasn’t a long article or you’d be furious at having invested the time only to get to that last sentence!

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