Employee Engagement With Feeling

3rd June - 2019

Let’s set the scene and think about your last three months at work. You may have enjoyed some fist pumping days, some good days, and some average or not so good days.  You are maybe someone who doesn’t really share your emotions and how you are feeling may or may not be obvious to others. You may have something going on outside of the office that is impacting your work or your level of interest and motivation?  Let’s face it, who hasn’t had some days in their work life where they feel a variety of emotions. Has it ever impacted your work or sense of employee engagement?

The Data On Employee Engagement

According to a recent Gallup report, “71% of the millennial workforce say they are either not engaged, or actively disengaged in the workforce today”. Furthermore, 64% of companies surveyed still measure employee engagement only once a year. (2017 Deloitte capital trends)

As a result, organisations are facing increasing pressure to significantly improve employee engagement but all too often they find that their managers lack the skills to help them do so.

Businesses can improve employee engagement and productivity by equipping their managers with the skills they need to enable their teams to be more resourceful and empowered. They need to encourage more employee led approaches where leaders ask powerful questions and really listen to their people to help them reach their potential.

If managed correctly and not driven as a Management KPI, engagement surveys provide vital insight into how employee engagement impacts business outcomes. In addition, it also provides a plan of what improvement may look like. When the achievement of business orientated performance outcomes becomes the driver, it obscures the importance of engagement and wellbeing at work.

Unfortunately, following the survey results being revealed, many organisations fail to take effective action planning seriously.  The gap between an organisation’s understanding of employee engagement and its ability to take timely action is so significant that they rarely take any effective action on the results at all.

In most organisations, HR manage this cumbersome yearly process. HR create the questions, analyse the data and communicate the results, generally, to board level and the process either stops there or is cascaded, very slowly, to managers!  Eventually employees will see a version of the report which unfortunately does not resonate well with them.

It is vital that your workforce is engaged, as without a passion for work, employees will be less happy, less productive and less invested in their role and your organisation

Feelings and Employee Engagement…Is It Enough?

The importance of management relationships, support and employees trust can predict wellbeing at work.

As a manager, you will have good and bad days. Does anyone ask you how you are feeling? Are you engaged at work? How productive do you feel on those bad days? All of these questions are geared at answering how businesses begin to understand how their managers and teams are really feeling at work.

What if you asked  ‘How are you feeling’?  Would that give you more insight into your employees and their level of employee engagement and emotional wellbeing?  Would they appreciate being asked this? Would it be enough? Would you want to be asked this?

Employees may or may not appreciate your thoughtful approach.  

We believe that engagement and wellbeing need to be considered as a whole, and shouldn’t  just focus on how individuals are feeling. Employees need to be seen as a complete individual, who needs to build strong relationships with their managers to enable them to feel supported.  This is truly ‘employee engagement with feeling’.

We believe that by having a timely check in process that can produce intelligent data on engagement, performance and wellbeing, intelligent conversations can take place.  We must do more than have these traditional silo approaches and look at how we can link together as many pre-existing HR led processes as possible, to truly add value to the employee and the organisation.  

To be even more sophisticated whilst keeping the process simple, we should always be linking performance, engagement and wellbeing together. By adding in feedback and development, businesses can truly begin to understand more and perform better.

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