When was the last time you gave something to your employees that wasn’t their pay-check?
It’s a tough question to answer. Whether you’re in HR, operations, or even finance, the life of a manager is hard. You're usually spinning plates, fighting fires and frantically paddling to keep your head above water.
With all this going on, you can easily forget about your employees. That’s rarely good, and can in the long run affect their engagement and performance. Before you know it your business and customers are going downhill.
When this happens, it’s time to remember Vanilla Ice - the little known employee engagement expert - and the musical masterpiece Ice Ice Baby:
“All right. Stop. Collaborate. And Listen.”
If there was ever a mantra for nailing employee engagement communication this is it. Especially now, when we’re stepping into the busy holiday season.
So stop, take a minute, listen to your employees and give them what they really want.
After all, it’s in your best interest. The commercial advantages for companies with engaged employees include profits and productivity that are 20% higher, lower staff turnover and absence, better customer service and satisfaction, and a range of health and wellbeing benefits. The list is long.
Here’s our top tips for how to take your communication and employee engagement to the next level:
1. Listen up!
The holiday season is coming and it’s going to get noisy. You’re going to be busy, your staff will be working flat out and it will be all hands to the pump. It’s times like this when listening to what’s happening on the ground becomes more valuable than ever.
One way of finding out how your employees are doing is to use your WFM tool to send instant surveys to your employees. This will help you find out what their pain points are and how you can make their lives easier.
In retail, healthcare and hospitality especially, employees play the most important role in delivering the best possible customer experience. Not only will you be able to understand what life is like on the frontline, you’ll be showing them you care and their input is valued.
2. Give more
Yet research we carried out earlier this year found 33% of employees say they don’t feel valued at work. One of the easiest ways to change this is to simply say ‘thank you’ more often.
On average, people are thanked for doing a good job once every four and a half months. This works out about three times a year (!). Imagine that for a second - you only get thanked three times every year for doing your job. It’s hardly a great incentive for wanting to be better at the job, deliver a better service, or provide a knock-out customer experience.
Even though you might be swept off your feet, try and find the time to thank your employees, it can make a world of difference to their wellbeing. It could also improve your annual turnover rate significantly.
3. Be the cool kid
Forget notice boards or notes pinned on staff room walls. This isn’t where the cool kids hang out. And, if you want to be part of the gang, and find the best way to communicate with employees, you need to be where they are.
As Fredrik Moser, chief human resources officer at NSP, the largest franchisee of Burger King in Nordic countries, says: “Everybody is on their phone, 24/7. So engaging with employees here is a really modern way of keeping in touch with their feelings and wellbeing. It’s a fast and efficient way to connect with them.
“And because our employees are already using the WFM app to check their schedule or apply for days off, it’s a great thing to be able to push communication and surveys through the same system.”
4. Take a leap of faith
Can you remember a time in your life when someone had complete faith and trust in you? It’s a good feeling right? Your job is to help your employees feel like this when they’re at work.
Let them know it’s ok to fail. It’s ok to make mistakes.
As Jim Donald says: ““People don’t want to be a headcount. They want to make their heads count. When you can create this culture of caring you're telling people, it's okay to make mistakes and how much more can you show you care than that?”
Want to know more about what your employees really want and how to boost your employee engagement communication? Then download our free report The State of the Deskless Workforce to find out!