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   ARTICLE   |   From Scotsman Guide Commercial Edition   |   October 2008

8 Ways to Engage Your Employees

Having workers who are committed to the company can better your financial performance

Although attracting and retaining talent is important, it also is essential to engage your employees. Engaged and committed employees are those who are proud to work for their employers, who are dedicated to the organization and who are willing to give the extra effort necessary to achieve the company’s goals.

Plus, engagement is actually an indicator of financial performance. Organizations that increase their employees’ engagement levels also can expect to improve their company’s financial performance significantly.

A recent Gallup research study on engagement found that:

  • 29 percent of employees work with passion and feel a profound connection to their company;
  • 54 percent are not engaged or have “checked out”; and
  • 17 percent of workers are actively disengaged and unhappy at work.

Forward-thinking leaders in the mortgage industry recognize that they have an opportunity to thrive in the competitive marketplace by better engaging the hearts and minds of employees. Here are eight suggestions for engaging your workforce.

  1. Foster open communication: Employees feel better when they are well-informed and encouraged to share their perspectives. Make sure you communicate the company values and vision. Communication should flow both ways. Encourage your employees to share their expectations, as well.
  2. Build trust: When leaders are open, honest, consistent and respectful of others in the workplace, they create a bond of trust that will go a long way to create the desired level of engagement.
  3. Create an engaging culture: When employees perceive their organization aligns with their own values, provides meaningful work, and treats its members with respect and fairness, then the culture impacts work life positively. Having a cooperative culture in which members are encouraged to set goals, take initiative, and work together to attain personal and organizational objectives will encourage individuals to work harder.
  4. Provide interesting and meaningful work: The more engaged in the work, the more engaged in the organization. Lack of fulfilling work leads the list of reasons people choose to leave a company.
  5. Continually develop employees: Employees must feel that they are growing and developing in their careers and improving themselves. Learning and expanding in a current role is good; learning and expanding through advancement is even better.
  6. Conduct “stay” interviews: Rather than waiting until employees leave and engaging in an exit interview, why not be more proactive? Consider having random stay interviews with employees. These interviews can uncover what suggestions employees have to improve the work environment. Stay interviews let an organization gather important information.
  7. Recognize and reward good performance: The best companies have methods for rewarding individual and team performance consistently and equitably. Recognition and reward tied to strategic and visionary goals reinforce and motivate the right behaviors.
  8. Value diversity: Recognizing diversity of opinion, style, approach and ideas sets excellent companies apart. Top companies value and leverage their employees’ differences to create results and an engaging culture.

Organizations with engaged employees have customers who use their products more -- and increased customer usage leads to higher levels of customer satisfaction. 


 


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