Employee management requires a number of skill sets, but in the age of digital distractions, the ability to keep employees engaged has become more important than ever.
The truth of the matter is that very few people are totally engaged from clock-in to clock-out, but when a worker becomes disengaged for long periods of time on a daily basis, this can cause trouble for employers and customers.
What Does Engagement Mean?
In a workplace setting, employee engagement means that an employee is actively participating in the tasks at hand. While someone may be able to get work done without being actively engaged, the lack of attention placed upon a task can lead to errors.
Employees disengage for a number of reasons, including not feeling valued in the workplace or being burdened by too much work or too many meetings that feel pointless.
As stated above, digital distractions like smartphones and social media have become a big problem for the modern workplace, and these distractions cause disengagement in all types of industries.
The problem with digital distractions is that they only take up little bits of time with each use, but these little bits add up to a lot of time spent disengaged during the workday.
Does It Matter If Employees Are Not Engaged At Work?
You might think that the biggest problem with an employee who is not engaged may be lost productivity, but the issue actually runs deeper than that. Someone who doesn’t feel engaged at work is likely to drag others down with them.
When this happens, it can result in extra work that others have to complete because an employee has lost motivation and interest, but it can also result in a disengaged employee making demoralizing comments or taking actions that bring down the mood of the entire workplace.
This can then have a domino effect as other employees begin to lose focus and become disengaged themselves. Before you know it, your entire workforce could become a problem, leading to the need for more intensive employee engagement programs.
Employee Engagement Ideas And Strategies
To curb engagement manager. This person is tasked with creating an engagement plan along with strategies that are specifically designed to target the unique issues causing distractions and disengagement in the workplace.
Your employee engagement strategy will depend on your place of business, your industry, your employees and a host of other factors that are unique to your situation. Not every business faces the same engagement challenges, and each employee has different needs in different settings.
Despite this being the case, there are some employee engagement strategies that have been proven to be successful across the majority of industries and workplaces. For example, the gamification of work-related tasks has shown to be successful in engaging employees.
Using this strategy, you turn everyday work tasks into a game or a friendly competition. By gamifying work tasks, employees have an incentive to stay engaged.
Speaking of incentives, offering incentives for staying engaged has also been shown to increase employee engagement. You can offer things like special discounts on company products or services to employees for completing tasks early or you could provide a financial incentive for finding certain hidden keywords in tasks.
The goal of incentivizing your employees’ workday is to give them a reason to stay focused. If you’re finding that engagement is an ongoing issue, however, you’re encouraged to look closer into why employees are losing focus in the first place.
Is there something you could change about certain tasks to help your workers focus? Is there something about your company culture that is leading to a lack of engagement? Perhaps there are some changes that could be made in your workspace to help your employees feel more engaged.
The Costs Of Not Having An Engagement Strategy
No matter the cause, finding solutions to engagement issues is important. It’s been estimated that employees who are not engaged can end up costing employers around 34% of each worker’s annual salary.
Depending on how much you pay each employee and how many employees your business has, this can equate to hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars per year.
Something else to consider is that the savings realized by moving to remote work can be seriously undercut by engagement issues. One study found that 40% of work-from-home employees experience burnout as the result of virtual meetings throughout the day.
Think about it – potentially four out of 10 remote workers are tuning out and getting less done because of decisions made by management.
All of this means that having the right plan in place is imperative to take full advantage of your employees’ productivity. By addressing engagement issues early, your company stands a better chance to reduce workplace distractions and burnout before they lead to major costs.