Often times, businesses are faced with situations they need to increase the output of what they accomplish without adding any additional cost to do so. A daunting task to say the least! During my career, I was once employed with an organization to do just that – seek out the creation of a Strategic Business unit within the existing organization, with the intent of increasing revenues to the Western Canadian Producer. Along with three other consultants, I met with numerous groups within the organization, asked questions, uncovered information and came out with possible scenarios and two business cases that could support creating revenue without adding cost to the bottom line. We were able to present the two cases to the executive and, through this exercise, the executive were then faced with the decision on which initiative or initiatives should be implemented to generate additional revenue and achieve success.
So, that was one approach, but of course there are other approaches organizations can take. Perhaps even a small investment that can reap huge rewards.
Recently I assisted a company begin the process of testing the pulse of their organization through conducting an Employee Engagement Survey. The end objective was to improve their recruitment and retention strategies to minimize their turnover of employees and while boosting the productivity and health of the organization. Rather, than having the senior team brainstorm ideas of what they think they could do, they chose to ask their employees what has worked and what could work! While in the process, they took this opportunity to determine how engaged their employees were on a daily basis, what would they liked changed, what new benefits would they like within their benefits program, how best would they like to be rewarded for great performance and a general opportunity to let the management team know what they would like to see to make this company an incredible place to work.
The Employee Engagement Survey was launched! With a two-week fact gathering approach over 86% of the close to 600 employees answered the survey. In fact, within days of launching the survey, we were asked to expand the field of the open ended questions – a strong sign that the employee were quite engaged and wanted to let the executive team know what they thought.
The survey results were outstanding! The employees overwhelmingly saw that the company had a great deal of opportunity for growth. The work life balance overall was very strong with a result of over 85%. As well, the majority of employees were very proud to work for the organization. This was easily a good start to continuing to build on the future success and growth of the organization!
Having experienced a change in organizational ownership, within the last 18 months, the employees were ready to see change occur. The survey was able to readily provide numerous suggestions on how the company could become an even more incredible place to work! Suggestions on rewards and recognition that would be seen as motivating were provided, rather than having management guess at what would be motivating. Best of all, an effective road map was laid out to provide insight on how better leadership development could assist in the overall success in the company. In fact, a strong conclusion that surfaced was that the company had very strong managers – with very strong scores across the areas of Capability and Focus. However, the message within the areas of Will, suggested that these strong managers, simply needed to become better leaders! How they encouraged, rewarded and appreciated their employees needed some work, some training and simply better understanding on how to be an effective leader. The employees were direct in their responses and able to provide worthwhile input to build professional development plans for their supervisors. There was no guessing, and it was a welcome plan for those supervisors who most likely knew they were struggling. The practise of promoting from within was strong but not always supported with additional leadership training. A win-win-win situation for the company, supervisor and employee!
Research has shown that Actively Disengaged employees offer only 0.5/ 1 the amount effort for every hour worked. This is the group of employees that could be considered as “having quit, but are still in the building.” A Neither Engaged nor Disengaged group of employees then provides between 0.6-1/1 the amount of effort for every hour worked. However, the Actively Engaged employees provide 1.5/ 1 the amount of effort to every hour worked. This is the group that is actively doing their job, offering up ideas for improvement and willing to go the extra mile. This is the group able to provide an increase of 25% on productivity by being truly engaged while at the workplace! By simply focusing and implementing strategies to those that are neither engaged nor disengaged and encouraging them to become actively engaged, exponential success can be achieved.
People leave positions and companies because of their leaders, not usually because of the content of their job. Those who enjoy working for their manager/ supervisor, feel appreciated for the work that they do and understand how their work contributes to the overall success and objectives of the organization are very likely to remain with the company and make it a place they can grow their career. It is also these same employees who are then great ambassadors for the company and will actively encourage others to join the company, promoting its benefits and growth opportunities.
So, are your employees actively engaged and contributing 1.5 times the amount of effort towards their jobs? Are they Neither Engaged nor Disengaged - showing up and collecting a paycheck? Or are they Actively Disengaged – have they quit, but are still in the building? What is the true pulse of your organization? Are turnover rates higher than usual or are you having difficulty attracting good talent?
Rather than guess, consider an Employee Engagement Survey, where the results will allow you to truly build strong relationship with all of your employees while you achieve success. At Legacy Bowes Group, we can assist you with the survey and then help build the action plan to take the results forward and create real productivity enhancements. Your organization’s success matters. Your success as a leader matters and the success of your employees matters to everyone.