Employee engagement is a business priority

We could start this post by asking one single question; employee engagement— buzz phrase or bonafide necessity? But, given the title of the page, it’s probably clear where we stand on things.

We make no secret of our love for all things employee engagement. Since inception, Smoking Gun has consistently listened to and learned from staff experience to make improvements. That could be improvements to processes, resources, facilities or policies.

Check out our monthly office news for proof of us actioning that feedback. This is why our team are supported through in-house and off-site training, Fridays are all about finishing early, flexible hours and weekly diaries are par for the course, and we take everyone out once a month for drinks where we invite them to tell us how they feel about recent weeks at work.

The list could go on, but let’s cut to the chase. The point is our philosophy centres on happy staff being productive staff; a satisfied and inspired team willing to go above and beyond to secure exceptional results. Given our track record for exceptional results we’re clearly doing something right, then.

Still unsure as to whether there are real correlations between good employee engagement and business performance? You might want to read on…

What is an engaged employee?

An engaged employee is passionate about their job and the company or organisation. They will go the extra mile to get things done. They are drivers of innovation. They make recommendations for streamlining and fine-tuning from the front line.

What is an unengaged employee?

An unengaged employee will spend most of their day mentally ‘checked out’. They will not feel the need to apply themselves. They sleepwalk through most days. They are unmotivated, unsatisfied and as a result often unhappy.

What is an actively unengaged employee?

The worst case scenario is an actively unengaged employee. These members of staff act on their unhappiness, undermining others and team achievements. They take up an unfair share of a manager’s time due to their poor attitude.

The Q12

Problem solving and leadership advice specialist, Gallup, has developed the Q12 model for employee engagement meta-analysis. Based on this, research across a variety of global sectors is conducted every two-three years. It showns that employee engagement impacts the following aspects of a business:

*Customer ratings

*Profitability

*Productivity

*Turnover

*Safety incidents

*Patient Safety Incidents

*Shrinkage

*Absenteeism

*Quality (defects)

Companies in the highest percentiles for employee engagement consistently outperform lower ranking firms in all these areas.

(C) Gallup

What can you do about boosting your employee engagement?

It’s vital to use the right employee engagement survey. Gallup’s Q12 shortlists 12 specific statements to put to staff. If they agree with these you know you’re barking up the right tree:

•I know what is expected of me at work.
•At work, my opinions seem to count.
•I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right.
•The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important.
•At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day.
•My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing quality work.
•In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work.
•I have a best friend at work.
•My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person.
•In the last six months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress.
•There is someone at work who encourages my development.
•This last year, I have had opportunities at work to learn and grow.

In addition to this, you should also…

*Focus on improving engagement at both local and organisational levels of the business
*Have good managers in place
*Coach managers so they understand what is expected, and hold them accountable for team engagement levels
*Always define engagement goals in everyday terms, not convoluted jargon

We can help

The vast majority of employees are not engaged. Gallup’s research found that just 13% of global employees would consider themselves positively engaged.
Smoking Gun specialises in advising firms on how they can improve their employee engagement. It’s not a one-size fits all situation, so for bespoke assistance get in touch…


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