In the rapidly evolving business reality, fueled by the pursuit of targets and the pervasive rush, at times there isn’t any moment to consider the meaning of our actions. We follow the tasks and try not to stay behind the competition, but we’re not always aware of why we are in such a hurry. What’s the purpose of our work, of the work of our team, and finally of the work of the entire organization that employs us?
Four Dimensions of Engagement
When speaking of employee engagement, we may identify its several forms, which are brought to our attention by C. Boshoff and G. Mels, namely:
- Engagement towards the organization: Identification with the mission, vision, values, and objectives of the company.
- Engagement towards work: Performing daily duties with a high level of commitment.
- Engagement towards the profession: Strong identification with individual objectives related to professional development.
- Engagement towards collaboration: Interactions with managers and co-workers.
If we know just our own goals and tasks, even in the long run, we can’t speak of full engagement. Only when we are aware of company objectives and other employees’ goals do we experience real meaning to our work, as we realize how important our duties are and in what way they translate into the actions of the company we work for.
Employees Want to Know
When evaluating employee engagement, we ask employees whether they know the mission, vision, and objectives of the company they work for. Then, it frequently turns out that, as a matter of fact, they have considerable knowledge; however, it concerns only a small portion of the company’s activity, or at times even just their own goals and perhaps those of their closest colleagues.
If we want to achieve a high level of engagement in our employees, we can’t afford to have them lack knowledge and guess what the employer intended when making them responsible for this or that. Employees should be aware of the purpose of their duties, know how these duties compare against those of other employees, and in what ways their roles support the general objectives of the organization.
By knowing the objectives of the entire organization, it’s easier for employees to deal with the periods of intensive work or with a difficult market situation because they know the purpose of their work and they feel personally responsible. Additionally, if employees see the progress towards the objective, they are motivated for further work, completing tasks with a high level of commitment.
Employees Like to Compare Themselves
It is widely known that employees like to compare themselves, both in the light of their duties and responsibilities and also in the context of the level of remuneration, despite the fact that such information is frequently confidential. When employees don’t know each other’s tasks, it’s easier for them to form opinions about their colleagues, especially negative ones.
This is not the case if they know not only their personal goals but also the goals of their colleagues. There is no room for spreading innuendoes, as it’s quite easy to investigate what hides behind a higher salary or greater extent of responsibilities. Disclosed goals are also an effective tool in the hands of managers, as they will better respond to the justification of a raise, promotion or change of responsibilities offered to someone who has to perform more challenging duties.
New Generations Enjoy Having Impact
Generation Y, which has settled in the labor market for good, knows very well what to expect from employers and wants to have a real impact on the organization. From the very first job interviews, the representatives of new generations ask about the possibility to exercise influence on the company, its development, and its business activity. Showing them individual goals in the context of company overall objectives makes managing Millennials easier and helps to keep their engagement at a high level.
Being familiar with not only our own goals but also with those of other people in the organization fosters a sense of justice and responsibility for our own work. Clear goals affect employee engagement towards the entire organization, and also towards their own work, profession and collaboration with others. Also, cascading goals is quite a convenience for managers in the context of justifying their actions and monitoring the progress on achieving specific objectives.