When you look up articles around “team engagement” and “employee engagement” online, you are often greeted with a huge list of benefits associated with them. Better team engagement levels for example can increase employee retention, decrease the number of days employees are absent from work, increase employee satisfaction and even make your employees more productive at what they do. These trends show that investing into team engagement can have a direct impact on your company’s success, and therefore they cannot be ignored!
Here are 10 things that can affect team engagement:
Providing opportunities to progress
The majority of employees that join your organisation will be wanting to progress within their role and advance their career in the future. If your organisation doesn’t have a clear path to progression internally then it can influence team engagement and even cause your employees to look elsewhere for companies that can offer them that all important next step. Depending on your organisation and the specific employee job role there may not be an official next step in terms of promotion or progression, so consider other ways you can offer your employees that “something more”. It might be a pay rise, more responsibility or a new project to take on, there are lots of ways to offer your employees that little bit extra to keep them engaged.
Flexible work for better team engagement
According to recent statistics, 75% of UK employees claim to favour flexible working options, so if you are failing to offer any flexibility to help with your employees’ work-life balance then it could be impacting your engagement levels. While you want your employees to love their jobs, you can’t deny the fact that people work to live therefore one of the biggest factors when choosing a new job (or deciding whether to stay in their current one) is how it will affect the overall work-life balance. For some organisations, a completely flexible approach to work simply isn’t an option, but there are a couple of options you could introduce including staggered start times so that employees clock the exact same hours but start their day at a time that suits their home commitments. Check out this blog on Searchability for more information.
A transparent pay structure
Something that can have a negative impact on team engagement is not having a transparent pay structure in place. Companies that can outline a clear structure of what employees will earn at each level of their employment with the company will benefit as it stops the employee gossip around “who gets paid what”, shows your commitment to stopping the gender pay gap and means that your employees won’t feel undervalued. Ideally, you’ll want to demonstrate exactly how your employees can move up the ranks, so make this clear in your salary matrix too.
A challenging role and a chance to develop
Nothing kills team engagement more than boredom, so if you fail to give your employees a challenge then chances are, you’ll take a hit on engagement and productivity. We’re not suggesting that you should change every job description for the sake of it but ensure to catch up regularly with employees and ensure that their responsibilities push their strengths and excite them on a day-to-day basis. As well as having a challenging job role, consider giving your employees to develop their skills on the job with external training and accreditations and even just by giving them time and freedom to research and explore something new.
Be honest with employees for better team engagement
Keeping your employees in the loop when making changes or big decisions for the business means you can avoid the dreaded “employee gossip grapevine” that comes with that uncertainty of not knowing what is coming in the future. It might be a corporate merger on the horizon, the threat of redundancies or even a potential office relocation, by being honest and up front with your people will help settle any unnecessary nerves and allows you to control to message before it gets skewed in the rumour mill!
Show your trust and allow for autonomy
According to a recent survey, 45% of employees indicated that a lack in trust from leadership is the biggest issue impacting work performance. To put it simply, a lack of trust can cause a breakdown in communication between you and your employees and your team engagement as a result takes a dive. Transparency is key here, if you promise something to your employees you must follow through and as we’ve just pointed out, you should keep your employees in the loop on those big changes in the business. Allow for a level of autonomy in each person’s role, if an employee feels like their manager is breathing down their neck and monitoring their every move, they are hardly going to feel trusted.
Fresh inspiration gets the juices flowing
Shaking things up a little and getting your employees to feel refreshed and inspired about their job is an excellent way to boost engagement. You might consider bringing in a motivational speaker or an external trainer to come in and give an informative talk that is relevant to your employees’ job roles. You might even want to involve your employees on a new company project and get them doing something out of their usual remit. You’ll be surprised how effective a bit of change can be for increasing team engagement!
Open communication channels for team engagement
A huge part of team engagement is having your employees communicating and engaging with each other, so it’s vital to have open communication channels and a culture that encourages your employees to collaborate and share ideas. If you are in an open-plan office, then communication should be pretty easy to encourage, but if you are split between locations and different offices look at using platforms like Slack or Microsoft Teams so that you can keep up the communication too.
Provide rewards and employee recognition
Rewards and employee recognition both have a really positive impact on team engagement, people thrive off reinforcement and quite frankly if we feel like we might be getting an incentive or a treat in work we are more likely to work harder to get it! Chances are you already have some perks and even an employee recognition scheme in place, but make sure you reassess yours on a regular basis. What got your employees engaged 5 years ago may not do the trick today, so look at which perks are widely used and even ask your employees what they might like to see included in the future.
Look at your management style
Studies have found that as much as 70% of an employee’s motivation is influenced by their manager, so if you have great managers that lead and inspire you’ll have great engagement levels and better retention, but if you have an underlying bad management style then you could be in trouble. A few examples of bad management styles include: over working your employees (unrealistic workloads / deadlines), micro-managing your employees (not enough trust to allow them to complete a task alone), disinterested management (where employees do not feel their opinions are valued). Out of everything that can effect team engagement, management style is probably the factor you’ll want to look at first so consider conducting a thorough employee engagement survey to gauge yours.
If you are looking to improve team engagement in your organisation check out our articles to help you along the way here.