The Key To Employee Engagement
Everyday people go to work, where they put their efforts towards fulfilling the goals of the organization. But how exactly do we keep these individuals committed to achieving these goals? Employees want to know their contribution is valued and truly making an impact. As such, employee engagement really can make all the difference. The key to employee engagement? To foster a between the employee and the organization – and it’s up to the organization’s leaders to create it.
How Connection Drives Employee Engagement
“Connection” is a basic human need, residing on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs just above physical safety. According to Daniel Pink’s, when Robert Reich was U.S. Secretary of Labor, and he visited a company to talk with the employees, he would often conduct a “pronoun test” to discover the level of employee engagement. He found that employees who referred to their company in terms of “we” were more engaged than those who referred to the company as “they.”
When an employee buys into something that your company is doing, they take ownership. They say things like “We’re successfully implementing a new program” or “We have great camaraderie, so we get things done.” When they’re dissatisfied, they remove themselves from the equation. They say things like “They don’t pay us well” or “They don’t get things done.”
Reich concluded that an employee who uses we feels more integrated into the company, identifies more with the company, and takes more ownership. Presumably, these people are more likely to be satisfied, engaged, and effective in their work.
Employee Engagement— Connecting with the Organization
Connection is the feeling that being part of your organization makes you part of a community of people who are engaged in something that’s bigger than any one person. There’s a sense of belonging to the organization and the people around you. There’s a deep sense not only of social camaraderie but of kinship, of shared culture, values, customers, and mission. Connection manifests as the sense that a place is “special,” that you and your colleagues are a “band of brothers” who have each other’s backs unconditionally.
In 2014, DecisionWise studied a group of more than 363,000 employees across fifty-two international organizations of all sizes and shapes and asked them to rate the statement “I am proud to tell people I work at this organization.” Seventy-eight percent of these employees gave a positive response—a relatively high favorability rating. But what’s really interesting is that in some organizations, more than 90 percent of employees responded with positive ratings to this question. In these organizations, not only did the employees connect with the organization, the organization connected with its employees.
Types of Connection that Drive Employee Engagement
When employees feel a deep, strong connection, they are more likely to expend extra energy for one another, to give more to the organization, and to be more positive in the things they say both at work and away from it. Effort, attention to quality and detail, and morale go up . . . and generally, so do profits. Connection can make a team more than the sum of its parts.
Read the full article here.
First published at DecisionWise blog by Tracy Maylett.
Image Credit: Adobe Stock
Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not of The HR Gazette or its team members.