Employee engagement is a really big thing in businesses today, and for good reason.
It’s a well-known fact that a company is only as good as the people working for them. If your employees are the best at what they do, then you don’t have to worry about who you’re leaving your organization with. And under no circumstances would you want to lose them to the competition. Engaging your people, getting them to truly care for your business, is a surefire way of retaining the best workers for your enterprise.
This is especially true in the case of younger professionals who typically try to find jobs which, in their opinion, truly change the world for the better (if not outright saving the world). This is why it’s crucial for companies to connect with such talented staff members on a personal level. But how, exactly, do you do that?
Factor in some flexibility
Rules, of course, have their place. In order for any organization to run properly, you need to have some guidelines to homogenize some operations (for example, it’s better to have everyone using OpenOffice, instead of letting each person use whatever office program suite they want). But these days, you have to keep in mind that rules which impose excessive control over employees is a surefire way to send otherwise nice and talented people running for the hills.
You have to be more flexible. Give people the option to work from wherever they are. The Internet and a good business VoIP phone system like the one offered by RingCentral (it’s incredibly affordable; you have no excuse) in tandem has made remote working a possibility. Allow workers some access to Facebook or YouTube so they can decompress a little bit at work (and DON’T ask for access to their social networking accounts!).
Above all else, what the younger workers respond to best is trust. Having too many restrictive rules sends a message of distrust, which can only lead to discouragement and, eventually, resignation.
Reel in some rewards
You may be paying your people some ridiculously generous amounts of money, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is adequate recognition for their work they’re doing in your company. Sure, it helps. But salary is just compensation – it’s something that’s already owed to your employees as far as they’re concerned. The reward they should be getting for going above and beyond their duties to the benefit of your company should be something special.
There are many ways you can do this. If the achiever in question is an entire department of people, you can show your appreciation by giving the group some budget for a team lunch or a team outing. If a handful of individuals have shown their utter devotion to the organization, you can give them personalized rewards. Give a musical fan tickets to “The Book of Mormon” and a Taylor Swift fan some backstage passes.
If everyone in the company is doing well, you can give everyone free movie passes or present them with freebies on their birthdays. Go beyond the standard gift baskets for Christmas.
When you do this, you will find yourself engaging your employees in a way that inspires their loyalty.
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