Employee Engagement – The Main Challenge Facing Organizations Today

Not so long ago that if you brought up the words “employee engagement” in a meeting, people would look at you like you were growing a third eye out of your head. However, today it is one of the biggest challenges in our organizations and has become the main topic of conversation in our meetings. Based on a multitude of studies conducted over the recent years, it has been shown that engaged employees are more productive, thus resulting in more successful companies. How is that the case? The answer lies in the definition. An “engaged employee” is one who is fully absorbed by and enthusiastic about their work and so takes positive action to further the organization’s reputation and interests. So all things being equal, an organization with ‘high’ employee engagement might therefore be expected to outperform those with ‘low’ employee engagement.

Different studies and research over the past couple of years have discovered the top reasons for employee happiness. However, the most recent survey conducted by Boston Consulting Group identified the number one factor for employee happiness is appreciation at work. What was even more interesting is that having an attractive salary was number eight on their list.

So, the looming question is this: What are you doing in your organization to ensure your employees are not just satisfied, but engaged? If you think an annual survey is providing this information, you are sorely mistaken. I am not discounting the annual surveys, but what about the rest of the year? If you do not have systems in place to continuously collect and respond to employee feedback, your employees will soon become disengaged. Here is the kicker: the investment in a system that provides continuous feedback is less than the investment of replacing one employee! While we are on the subject of feedback systems, this can also be implemented with your residents and family members.

It takes an average of two times a person’s salary to replace an employee. Every time an employee leaves your organization, you are taking profit off the table. Creating engaged employees is not easy. However, keeping an employee engaged is even more challenging. Our budget season would be so much easier if we could simply reduce employee turnover. Guess what? You can increase employee engagement, decrease employee turnover, and run a more productive, efficient, and profitable organization. Make the decision, and commit to the decision. Don’t make the commitment just because it will make your organization more profitable. Make the decision because it is the right thing to do.

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