Employee engagement has no distinct definition. Many believe its meaning to be synonymous with terms such as job satisfaction, company loyalty, and retention of talents and potential to overachieve. All of this and more can only be achieved by empowering the employees. Therefore, dear managers, developing a relationship of trust with your employees is crucial for an organization to thrive in today’s competitive world. This piece will hopefully convince you about the significance of engaging your employees and how to accomplish this feat by competently negating these myths mentioned below.
Myth 1: Lack of Employee Engagement does not concern my company
The success of any company is proportional to its employees’ creative and innovative inputs. Employee engagement is the key factor that determines the quality of such inputs. Active engagement of employees ensures sincere commitment to their workplaces. As statistically proven by Gallup’s data compiled in 2014; 31.5% of U.S. workers were engaged in their jobs, while 51%, were still “not engaged” and 17.5% were “actively disengaged”. Active disengagement costs $450 billion to $550 billion per year in the US, as compared to £52 billion and £70 billion it costs per year in the UK. Therefore, dear employers, form a relationship of mutual respect with your employees because if employee engagement paves the road to organizational prosperity, active disengagement results in a loss (Mone & London, 2014).
Myth 2: Employee Engagement decreases productivity
A big misconception found in many organizations is that creating a workplace culture that makes the employees content lessens productivity. In fact, the opposite is true. A healthy employer-employee relationship increases loyalty, focus and retention of talents (Kompaso & Sridevi, 2010). Consequently, rotation is reduced by 65% and absenteeism is reduced by 30%. In addition, effective employee engagement motivates the employees to over achieve their respective targets by 38%.
Myth 3: Compensation and benefits are the biggest factors increasing Employee Engagement
OECD reports on Unit Labor Costs clearly indicate that there is a widening gulf between compensation cost and productivity over the last 15 years. Hence, raising salary or providing other material benefits do not guarantee an employee’s full co-operation. As has been noted, appraisal reports, “pat on the back”, is essential in boosting the confidence and encouraging the employee to work to the best of their abilities (Lockwood, 2007).
Myth 4: Employee Engagement is a case of internal communication and does not have an impact on customers
Nothing can be so far from the truth than believing in this myth. Simon Sinek’s quote, “Customers, will never love a company until the employees love it first,” refutes this myth. Granted, one on one communication with your employees is important to create a circle of trust, but it is foolish to think it has no impact on your customers. Employees are the representatives of organizations; they account for the credibility of the company. Customers’ are motivated to invest in a company only when they judge for themselves how invested its own employees are.
Myth 5: There is no “secret formula” for Employee Engagement
Deloitte, however, listed these five factors as ingredients of this secret formula, “meaningful work, hands-on management, positive work environment, growth opportunity and trust in leadership,” (Shahid & Azhar, 2013). Effective leadership is essential for a positive outgrowth in terms of acquiring profits, business expansion, and social collaboration. A managerial duty performed accurately instills vigor in the employees to exceed the expectations of their superiors.
Myth 6: Employee Engagement doesn’t have an impact on business results
The investment done in hiring, training and building a suitable profile of an employee can be large. However, it can be returned in multiplied figures if employee engagement is significant. It is shown by companies valuing employee engagement by; outperforming their competitors by an increased factor of 3.5, furnishing 147% above average earnings per share (EPS) and securing greater profits, 20% more, as compared to other companies. The bottom line is thus, future of work and business results are dependent on the degree of employee engagement. A company benefits financially and in reputation, the same as an employee benefits from a dignified employment.