The greatest threat to productivity in corporate America is low employee engagement. Year after year this thief robs U.S. companies of approximately $450-550 billion in lost productivity. An actively disengaged employee, one who is unhappy and unproductive and likely to spread negativity to coworkers, will cost their organization $3,400 for every $10,000 of their salary or 34 percent. So, if you have a disengaged employee making $60,000 a year it can cost you up to $20,400.
When confronted with these facts most leaders blame the company. “We just don’t have the budget to fix this problem” or “I don’t have the time, I have so much on my plate now that I couldn’t possibly make the time to address this issue.” So, we sit back and watch as this thief continue its crime spree. But as a leader if you are just watching and letting this happen doesn’t that make you an accomplice to this crime and shouldn’t you also be held accountable? Ok, that last statement might have been a little harsh but now that I have your attention let’s agree that this is costing your company a great deal of money and that you need to address this issue.
Here are three simple things you can do to improve employee engagement without adding too much to your budget or your calendar.
- Get to know your employees: Employees that feel their supervisor cares about them as a person are more likely to be a highly engaged employee.
- Talk to your employees
- Ask questions that allow you learn about their lives and interests
- Complete a team building exercise that will focus on getting to know each other
- Encourage your employees to tell you about their problems, frustrations and successes
- Recognize employees: An employee who is recognized for their hard work is likely to be more engaged.
- Tell employees when they have done a good job
- Give them awards or hold a celebration
- Be genuinely appreciative
- Develop people: Nothing keeps people engaged like learning new things.
- Survey your employees to determine what their needs are and provide purposeful and consistent opportunities for ongoing training and development
- Create a culture of learning
Makes these practices part of your daily routine and soon you will be seeing the benefits of having a highly engaged workforce.