Juice bars, on-site spas, nap pods…the list seems virtually endless for companies that have big bucks to spend on employee perks. What do you do when you want to give your employees the world but only have pennies to spare? The first thing you can do is change your thinking. While huge perks and bonuses are appreciated, they are not the things that employee engagement is made of. Get back to the basics when you want to drive employee engagement.
- Ask For and Listen to Feedback
Your employees are the people on the front lines. They know if your ideas are working or not, and they know what things can be improved to drive your business toward your vision. Give your employees an opportunity to provide feedback, and put a system in place to respond to that feedback. When your employees feel like they have a say in what happens around them, they are automatically more engaged.
- Share Your Vision
Speaking of your vision…share it. Your employees cannot help you reach your goals if they have no idea what those goals are. Let your employees in on the secret. Where do you ultimately see your business going? If that is too big an idea, start with weekly goals, move on to monthly goals, and finally to ultimate goals. When your employees know of your plans, they can work with you to make your visions a reality.
- Personal Involvement
Ask each employee to draft a plan that outlines how they will help the company meet your vision. What will they personally do? Where do they see themselves in 10 years and how will they get there? When you have your employees write these things down on paper, they are more likely to turn into reality.
Do not be the type of boss that has to micro-manage. Give your employees the ability to make decisions. Once those decisions are made, back your employees. Your workforce is more engaged when they believe that you have faith in their abilities.
- Make Every Achievement a Celebration
Each small victory or accomplishment is a cause for celebration. Do you need to have a band and balloons? Of course not. But you do need to make sure that you acknowledge your employees when they do something well or meet a goal.
Employee engagement can be a difficult thing to achieve. Most of us think bigger than necessary when considering how to keep our workforce motivated and performing. Get rid of what you think you know, and get back to the basics. You may find yourself surprised at how engaged your employees become when you simply treat them well.