Employees can be happy, motivated, or engaged, but an ideal employee encompasses all three, says Sharilyn Lauby at the HR Bartender blog.
Unlike happiness or motivation, she says “when employees are connected, they understand what it takes for the company to be successful, want to see the organization succeed and will do what it takes to help the business get there.”
So just how engaged are your employees?
According to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace Report 2013, most workers are disengaged, costing the U.S. alone up to $550 billion per year.
“Actively disengaged workers – i.e., those who are negative and potentially hostile to their organizations – continue to outnumber engaged employees at a rate of nearly 2-1.”
Gallup conducted the study in 142 countries, and found that, worldwide, “13% of employees are engaged in their jobs, while 63% are not engaged and 24% are actively disengaged.”
American employees, meanwhile, have one of the highest ratios of engaged to actively disengaged employees – 1.6-to-1. Similar results were found in Canada and Australia.
Having engaged employees reap many benefits for an organization.
“Work units in the top quartile in employee engagement outperformed bottom-quartile units by 10% on customer ratings, 22% in profitability, and 21% in productivity. Work units in the top quartile also saw significantly lower turnover (25% in high-turnover organizations, 65% in low-turnover organizations), shrinkage (28%), and absenteeism (37%) and fewer safety incidents (48%), patient safety incidents (41%), and quality defects (41%).”
To help organizations achieve engaged, happy and motivated employees, start with these three steps.
1. Let People Do What They Do Best
In looking at the country of India, the Gallup study suggested that the reason many training and development programs introduced by Indian organizations did not produce the desired results is because they didn’t a factor in “employees’ talents, put employees in the right roles, (or) develop them according to their inherent strengths.”
“At work, do you do what you well every day?” This is the single best question Indian organizations can ask their employees. Today, despite management teams’ best intentions to create a beneficial learning climate. These efforts often fall short because they don’t factor in employees’ talents. Remedying this begins with improving companies’ capacity to identify employees’ talents, put employees in the right roles, and develop them according to their inherent strengths.
2. Help Employees Feel Part of a Group
Start by being open with information within your organization. “Spreading the intel lets everyone in on the lay of the land and strengthens the feeling among workers they are an important part of the organization,” reports Forbes’ Karsten Strauss (who also has her list of tips).
This is embodied by Clive Thompson’s idea of social proprioception, which means having an awareness of what co-workers are doing or where they’re at.
3. Use Mobile Learning to Build a Sense of Community
Mobile learning helps us do our jobs better by making the information we need immediately available. At Float, we call this “learning at the point of need.”
Many of your coworkers bring their own smartphones (and/or tablets) with them, and/or your organization either provides one or subsidizes their purchase and use.
Most people have an emotional attachment to their phones, and the feeling of being connected with others when they are on. In fact, “nomophobia” is the term used for the fear of being disconnected when you don’t have your phone with you.
With encouragement from your organization’s leaders, mobile devices can be used to build a sense of community or even collaborative “communities of practice” where news, plans, and other information can be shared among colleagues.
And, as Float’s Chad Udell has previously discussed, the engagement of employees through the use of mobile can be tracked and reported on using a variety of metrics.
Help keep your employees engaged, happy and motivated with mobile learning by contacting us today.
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