Four things are important when we talk about employee engagement; commitment, motivation, loyalty and trust. Their level determines the quality of engagement of an employee. Each one is briefly discussed in the coming paragraphs.
- Commitment: Commitment means the degree to which individuals associate themselves with the job, the responsibilities and the organisational objectives. Engaged employees are those who are fascinated by their work and committed to face every challenge to attain their goals. They are dependable and highly productive and therefore, are accountable for what they do.
- Motivation: Up till recently it was believed that the biggest motivation is achievement. The reverse is also true, which means achievement results in more motivation. If employees put in their 100 percent efforts to take their organisation to the next level, this attained status motivates them more than anything. Proper rewards and recognitions can further motivate them to achieve more and more for their organisation. Motivation and achievement go hand in hand and act as the burning fuels for the success of any organisation.
- Loyalty: Employees who are actively engaged in their work show more loyalty towards the organisation. The best part is that they need less focus and attention of managers to perform their task as they themselves feel accountable for their job responsibilities and results attained. However, it doesn’t take much time for actively engaged employees to turn into disengaged employees if the organisation doesn’t have a well established reward system. Recognition is a basic necessity of individuals to remain steered up towards their job.
- Trust: High levels of employee engagement can be fostered only when trust prevails in the organisation from both the sides. As they share strong emotional bond with the organisation, the latter should also show trust in their abilities. Employees must be given autonomy to perform their tasks their way. They should not be restricted to a specific rules and regulations and therefore, should be motivated to experiment to perform their task in a different and innovative manner.
Phases of Employee Engagement
The first phase of the employee engagement cycle is attracting the best talent from the industry. This phase involves creating a positive impression about the work culture and employee career as a potential employer. It is all about carefully creating an authentic, genuine and crafted image as an employer. This is although an indirect yet the first impression that attracts a big pool of candidates to apply for the job vacancies in an organisation. The first phase is the most important phase of the employee engagement cycle.
Another aspect spreading the reputation of an organisation is its employees. They are not only the employees but also are regarded as internal customers. Their job and career satisfaction speaks about their workplace. Therefore, they should not be taken for granted. Besides attracting the talent from the outside, it is important to keep the existing employees attracted towards the organisation.
The acquire image involves more than one thing. It includes (1) the way the potential candidates are interacted while advertising a position; (2) keeping the promises that were made while hiring them and (3) providing the new joiners a right kind of work culture.
When an organisation advertises a position, interested candidates apply. The way their applications are created, the reaction of the organisation and the manner in which they are approached speak a lot about the image and work culture of an organisation.
Hiring the best talent not only serves the purpose. During their honeymoon or initial period with the organisation, the company must try to keep all the promises that were made during the selection process.
Besides this, they should feel happy and satisfied when their expectations are tested against the reality. Providing the right kind of culture also plays an important role in keeping them engaged.
The whole idea is to prepare them to perform their best by giving them challenging tasks right from the beginning. It’s like developing a habit or culture right from the time they decide to work with the organisation.
Continuous moving the talent is the last but an unending phase. It not only involves promoting the employees to a higher designation along with salary increments but also growing them in other tangible and intangible ways. Job rotation can help them grow in experience, responsibility and belongingness but only when it is done right. Advancing the employees in every aspect, be it monetary or non-monetary, is the key to retain people and develop their overall personality.
The 3 C’s of Employee Engagement
Career: When individuals join an organisation, they expect to build a career with it. If the top management and immediate managers spend dedicated time in carving out the careers of its employees, they will feel that they belong to the organisation. They feel engaged when they receive support from the management in growing their careers.
An organisation can provide its employees with opportunities to grow professionally through job rotations, indulging them in significant tasks, challenging assignments and promotions. They should also be given a specific level of authority and autonomy to take their decisions on their own. The organisations prepare an entirely new breed of employees if they genuinely invest in developing the careers of their people.
Competence: Competence is all about the ability to grow. Regular workshops and training sessions must be held in order to help employees acquire a higher level of skills and competencies. The focus should be on developing for marketable skills. Most employees after spending a few months look for competence-boosting opportunities with the organisation so that they can grow and move to the next level of their careers. While the career focuses on the actual growth in terms of designation, wages and perks and authority, competence is the ability to grow utilizing the opportunities.
Care: Sitting at the topmost, care is regarded the finest art of the managers by which they can make employees feel an indispensable part of their organisation. The managers need to be empathetic and sensitive towards people and understand their personal problems. Showing small day-to-day caring gestures towards employees make them feel that they belong to the organisation and organisation belongs to them.