It’s little surprise that feeling connected to our organisation’s mission drives positive performance at work - when we buy into the purpose of what we’re doing we’re willing to go that extra mile as we feel the company’s success is allied to our own.
But feeling engaged with our work benefits us as much as our organisation. We’re happier, more focused, self-motivated. We understand our contribution to the organisation and are invested in our personal development.
Each of us is responsible for our own engagement, and that of those around us. So we need to try to recognise what’s working and what’s not, and influence change where necessary. But where do we start?
We need to look inside, and we need to look outside.
Firstly, take a good look at your team and/or organisation and make an honest assessment of what’s working well about your culture. How are these aspects celebrated? What can be done to make them even better?
Secondly, analyse the gaps - where can things be better? Make a list of the changes you’d like to see. In what ways could people feel more included? What would help them to contribute more positively towards your organisation’s success? Who do you need to influence to make change happen?
Everyday more and more case studies are emerging of organisations who are getting this stuff right. These organisations understand the link between employee engagement and performance, so we can learn from their experience.
For Marks & Spencer for example, shifting from an annualised, action-plan driven approach where engagement was merely seen as another task to be completed to a more committed approach that concentrated on regularly listening to employees - and acting on what they heard - has delivered a year-on-year increase in engagement for the past six years.
This is just one of many examples where organisations have seen the difference a fresh approach to engaging employees can make. So what needs to happen to help your organisation reinvigorate its approach to engaging employees?