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NEWSLETTER : creating employee engagement
synergy reviewi d e a s t o e m p o w e r b u s i n e s s e x c e l l e n c e
a weekly newsletter by Dr Wilfred Monteiro- Mumbai
www.synergymanager.net
CREATING EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT
Over the past few years, there's been much written about employee
engagement . What it is, what it isn't, is it important and (assuming it is) how
do you get it? In fact, there are literally dozens of consulting, survey and
training firms that have either sprung to become employee engagement
experts.
However the notion of employee engagement is simple. Individual contribution
of employees (including managers and leaders) in the workplace is very much
influenced by the strength of their respective emotional connection to their
employer. The stronger and more positive that connection, the more likely it is
that the employee will give their best effort - in fact, go the proverbial "extra
mile" - for the sake of their organization. While the vast majority of recent
experiences supports this idea, capitalizing on it requires a very disciplined
strategy of measurement and response, as well as a long-term commitment of
resources and talent. More significantly, it may also require some
organizational soul-searching.
At its core, employee engagement is based upon the basic concept of
reciprocity. The employer works to create a work environment that is so
emotionally satisfying and rewarding for employees, that it literally invites
them to become similarly invested (engaged) in its long-term success. Like
the any sport like cricket or football, it is conceptually simple to grasp, but not
necessarily easy to execute well. One of the challenges is that emotional
connections can be difficult to measure and are prone to shift (in some cases
quickly) in response to changes in the work environment. More confounding is
that these relations are typically forged one employee at a time, yet are
influenced by multiple variables (reporting manager relationships,
organizational mission and values, workload, peer relationships, etc.). Add to
this the cost/resource challenges created by the recession or business cycles
facing the industry employee engagement as a business improvement
initiative can quickly become a "nice to do" for better times.
WHY EMOTIONAL ENGAGEMENT IS IMPORTANT
 In times of economic doom and gloom, employees lose confidence and
become fearful about the organization's future. If there have been staff
redundancies within an organisation or targets aren't being met, there can
be a downward spiral effect on employee productivity which can further eat
into organization performance. However, when employees are emotionally
and psychologically engaged with an organisation, it will perform more
effectively. This has a flow on effect as employees become even more
engaged. People take stronger ownership when they're involved in the
organization's improved performance and future development. They also
become more enthusiastic and supportive about what's happening in their
work environment. They Bring a consistently higher level of commitment,
creativity and energy to their jobs
 In creating a culture of service, performance, and operational excellence,
employee engagement is the key that unlocks the door to customer
loyalty. Unfortunately, the leadership skills needed to create an
environment that fosters employee engagement, motivation, and trust are
often elusive in many organizations. In an environment of high
engagement people can rightfully say… "I feel as though I make a
difference. My job allows me latitude to make decisions and implement
them in order to get the job done. At the end of the day I can look back
and see what I have been able to accomplish with a great feeling of
satisfaction."
HOW TO START WITH EMPLOYEE ENGAGMENT?
We can easily “guestimate” five common things that employees want, need,
and expect from their employers need to be more productive, valuable, and
promotable within the organization.
#1 - COMMUNICATION
Few employees feel that they get enough communication or information on
company updates from their boss. Open communication is key to creating and
sustaining a culture of excellence, as well as, increasing employee
engagement and trust, customer loyalty, and ultimately improving bottom-line
results.
Open communication can be in the form of: one-on-one updates with staff
members; daily briefings with the entire team; company newsletters and
intranet updates; or through regularly scheduled team or departmental
meetings. Open communication does not mean sharing confidential company
information, but it should include keeping your staff abreast of inter-company
changes, financial results, customer feedback (good or bad), and aware of
new products and services that will soon be launched.
Remember, from the employee's perspective, there is always something new
to share, and when you open up the lines of communication, you lessen the
likelihood of negative gossip.
#2 - INVOLVEMENT
Creating fully engaged employees, who have passion for driving excellence,
also includes involvement. Most employees want to be involved in the
planning of work that affects them. When employees are not involved it often
contributes to misalignment, negativity, and low morale.
Involving employees doesn't mean getting their say on confidential business
issues, but it does include soliciting their feedback on workplace issues,
processes or procedural changes that will impact their work -- before they are
implemented. When employees understand the "why" and are involved to
some extent in the improvement process and implementation, you have a
greater chance at creating sustainable change, a high level of trust, buy-in,
and support.
#3 – THE RIGHT RESOURCES & RIGHT SUPPORT
When employees are provided with the proper tools and resources to do a
quality job, it creates a great environment for holding everyone accountable
for driving excellence. It also demonstrates that the organization is serious
about creating a work environment where employees can thrive, be
successful, and contribute to improving operational and financial results.
Basic resources should include appropriate supplies and equipment, along
with learning and development opportunities to enhance and grow employee
competence, confidence, skill, and ability.
When was the last time you assessed where you stand (as a leader) in
providing the basic tools and resources to ensure a job well done from your
staff? If funding and budget cuts are barriers, use the wisdom of your team to
surface resourceful ways to ensure they have what they need, while not
causing a financial burden to the organization.
#4 - RECOGNITION
Even in organizations who profess that they do a good job in rewarding and
recognizing staff members, there are still many employees starving for it.
That's often because the level of recognition initiated often varies based on
the departmental leader. I believe that there should be multiple channels of
reward and recognition flowing throughout an organization; not only top-down
recognition - which is manager-to-employees, but also lateral recognition -
which is peer-to-peer.
When employees feel they are adequately recognized for a job well done,
they become self-motivated to do more with less. And for the most part, a
sincere "thank you" with a pat on the back from a manager or senior leader to
a line employee can go a long way in creating and sustaining a culture of
excellence.
What ever the workforce composition, employee engagement is strongly
driven by the immediate manager and his or her ability to meet employees'
emotional requirements. In this context, it is suggested that people are
motivated more by intrinsic factors, such as personal recognition, rather than
simply focusing on extrinsic factors, such as compensation. The following
ideas can be executed with very little cost for everyone and anyone….
 Invite successful teams to present their project achievements to top
management.
 Start a staff appreciation program. Award points for positive traits. Points
may be redeemed for small prizes or special privileges.
 Plan a surprise achievement celebration for a staff member or team.
 Pass on the praise. If you hear a positive remark about a person, repeat it
to that person as soon as possible--perhaps via email. . Publish a "kudos"
column in your newsletter. Ask staff to submit kudos for their peers.
 Call an employee to your office to thank them.
 Express interest in your staff members' professional development or
personal accomplishments like Mohan participated in the Mumbai
Marathon.
 Establish relationships between staff and upper management. One idea:
send new employees out to lunch with the company president.
 Mail thank you notes to employees who work long hours for a special
project/crisis and start a program to curtail needless late working as well
 Allow employees to select their next assignments. If you can allow
employees to choose their work, they will be more engaged and
dedicated.
 Designate successful teams and employees as office consultants.
 Give employees an extra long lunch break on occasion or convert this into
a surprise party or celebration of a company’s achievement
 establish a real generous Award to recognize employees who consistently
do their job well…. This should make the others jealous atleast !!!
#5 - TRUST
Trust isn’t something you can buy. Trust is something you earn. It’s based on
a set of behaviors that can be learned, practiced, and mastered. It’s a
commitment that fundamentally informs how people think about and interact
with customers, suppliers, and coworkers. In time, it becomes an
organization’s way of being. An interesting trend observed in most companies
is that the employee perceptions drop after spending 6 months in the
organization. It highlights the challenge in managing new hire expectations
and the possible gap in employer brand promise and the actual experience.
The change is largely related to credibility of the commitments made by
management, openness in communication with seniors and recognition of
work.
When leaders work diligently to keep the lines of communication open, involve
employees in the planning of work that impacts them, provide employees with
proper tools and resources, and consistently recognize exemplary job
performance - all of these elements contribute to creating a high level of trust
on both sides of the fence. In a good company , trust should manifests itself
in every relationship. Managers believe that employees want to be productive,
encouraging them to participate in the business. Employees act like owners.
They’re enthusiastic and passionate about their work and the company’s
mission. In a high-trust environment, people cooperate and collaborate,
leading to positive workplace interactions, higher profits, and greater
productivity.
MASTER KEY ….ONE SIZE /FITS ALL?
Please note that every organization is different. There is a crying need to fine
tune their engagement initiatives. employees in different demographic groups
feel differently about what's important to be emotionally engaged with their
employer. Three key differences are … career stage; employee gender and
tenure of employment within an organization need special attention and
appropriate action.
Career starters are more engaged emotionally through:
1. professional support by their immediate manager
2. organization communication about its direction
3. organization values and behaviors that they support
4. organization commitment to improving operating systems
5. organization commitment to high performance
6. organization focus on team performance
Employees with more established careers are more engaged emotionally
through:
 trust and respect for their immediate manager
 high performance standards for the organization
 understanding how organization strategies are met
 fair HR policies and procedures
 their organization reducing risk and acting responsibly
New starters are more engaged emotionally through:
 the relationship with their immediate manager
 effective communication in the organization
 organizational performance
 a customer service culture within the organization
 the organization reducing risk
Longer serving employees are more engaged emotionally through:
 the organization's long term strategies and aims
 HR policies and practices
 plans and projects for organizational long term success
This is not an exhaustive list or a one lasting solution …. EMPLOYEE
ENGAGMENT is a moving target. Creativity & innovation ( a buzz word) today
is needed also in employee engagement… Remember what Peter Senge
mentions in The Learning Organisation”… what is the best today will be
common-place tomorrow…”
GIVE ME YOUR FEEDBACK… we could have a compendium of best
practices of Indian companies… To know how they invent & reinvent ways to
delight their employees.
Best wishes
Wilfred Monteiro
Weekly knowledge journal to client companies, seminar participants & well wishers of
SYNERGY MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES, MUMBAI
website: www.synergymanager.net
Synergy Review respects your privacy, if you don't wish to receive any such
unsolicited communication from us, mark DELETE in the caption & reply to us

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Dr wilred monteiro creating employee engagement

  • 1. NEWSLETTER : creating employee engagement synergy reviewi d e a s t o e m p o w e r b u s i n e s s e x c e l l e n c e a weekly newsletter by Dr Wilfred Monteiro- Mumbai www.synergymanager.net CREATING EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT Over the past few years, there's been much written about employee engagement . What it is, what it isn't, is it important and (assuming it is) how do you get it? In fact, there are literally dozens of consulting, survey and training firms that have either sprung to become employee engagement experts. However the notion of employee engagement is simple. Individual contribution of employees (including managers and leaders) in the workplace is very much influenced by the strength of their respective emotional connection to their employer. The stronger and more positive that connection, the more likely it is that the employee will give their best effort - in fact, go the proverbial "extra mile" - for the sake of their organization. While the vast majority of recent experiences supports this idea, capitalizing on it requires a very disciplined strategy of measurement and response, as well as a long-term commitment of resources and talent. More significantly, it may also require some organizational soul-searching. At its core, employee engagement is based upon the basic concept of reciprocity. The employer works to create a work environment that is so emotionally satisfying and rewarding for employees, that it literally invites them to become similarly invested (engaged) in its long-term success. Like
  • 2. the any sport like cricket or football, it is conceptually simple to grasp, but not necessarily easy to execute well. One of the challenges is that emotional connections can be difficult to measure and are prone to shift (in some cases quickly) in response to changes in the work environment. More confounding is that these relations are typically forged one employee at a time, yet are influenced by multiple variables (reporting manager relationships, organizational mission and values, workload, peer relationships, etc.). Add to this the cost/resource challenges created by the recession or business cycles facing the industry employee engagement as a business improvement initiative can quickly become a "nice to do" for better times. WHY EMOTIONAL ENGAGEMENT IS IMPORTANT  In times of economic doom and gloom, employees lose confidence and become fearful about the organization's future. If there have been staff redundancies within an organisation or targets aren't being met, there can be a downward spiral effect on employee productivity which can further eat into organization performance. However, when employees are emotionally and psychologically engaged with an organisation, it will perform more effectively. This has a flow on effect as employees become even more engaged. People take stronger ownership when they're involved in the organization's improved performance and future development. They also become more enthusiastic and supportive about what's happening in their work environment. They Bring a consistently higher level of commitment, creativity and energy to their jobs  In creating a culture of service, performance, and operational excellence, employee engagement is the key that unlocks the door to customer loyalty. Unfortunately, the leadership skills needed to create an environment that fosters employee engagement, motivation, and trust are often elusive in many organizations. In an environment of high engagement people can rightfully say… "I feel as though I make a difference. My job allows me latitude to make decisions and implement them in order to get the job done. At the end of the day I can look back and see what I have been able to accomplish with a great feeling of satisfaction."
  • 3. HOW TO START WITH EMPLOYEE ENGAGMENT? We can easily “guestimate” five common things that employees want, need, and expect from their employers need to be more productive, valuable, and promotable within the organization. #1 - COMMUNICATION Few employees feel that they get enough communication or information on company updates from their boss. Open communication is key to creating and sustaining a culture of excellence, as well as, increasing employee engagement and trust, customer loyalty, and ultimately improving bottom-line results. Open communication can be in the form of: one-on-one updates with staff members; daily briefings with the entire team; company newsletters and intranet updates; or through regularly scheduled team or departmental meetings. Open communication does not mean sharing confidential company information, but it should include keeping your staff abreast of inter-company changes, financial results, customer feedback (good or bad), and aware of new products and services that will soon be launched. Remember, from the employee's perspective, there is always something new to share, and when you open up the lines of communication, you lessen the likelihood of negative gossip. #2 - INVOLVEMENT Creating fully engaged employees, who have passion for driving excellence, also includes involvement. Most employees want to be involved in the planning of work that affects them. When employees are not involved it often contributes to misalignment, negativity, and low morale. Involving employees doesn't mean getting their say on confidential business issues, but it does include soliciting their feedback on workplace issues, processes or procedural changes that will impact their work -- before they are
  • 4. implemented. When employees understand the "why" and are involved to some extent in the improvement process and implementation, you have a greater chance at creating sustainable change, a high level of trust, buy-in, and support. #3 – THE RIGHT RESOURCES & RIGHT SUPPORT When employees are provided with the proper tools and resources to do a quality job, it creates a great environment for holding everyone accountable for driving excellence. It also demonstrates that the organization is serious about creating a work environment where employees can thrive, be successful, and contribute to improving operational and financial results. Basic resources should include appropriate supplies and equipment, along with learning and development opportunities to enhance and grow employee competence, confidence, skill, and ability. When was the last time you assessed where you stand (as a leader) in providing the basic tools and resources to ensure a job well done from your staff? If funding and budget cuts are barriers, use the wisdom of your team to surface resourceful ways to ensure they have what they need, while not causing a financial burden to the organization. #4 - RECOGNITION Even in organizations who profess that they do a good job in rewarding and recognizing staff members, there are still many employees starving for it. That's often because the level of recognition initiated often varies based on the departmental leader. I believe that there should be multiple channels of reward and recognition flowing throughout an organization; not only top-down recognition - which is manager-to-employees, but also lateral recognition - which is peer-to-peer. When employees feel they are adequately recognized for a job well done, they become self-motivated to do more with less. And for the most part, a
  • 5. sincere "thank you" with a pat on the back from a manager or senior leader to a line employee can go a long way in creating and sustaining a culture of excellence. What ever the workforce composition, employee engagement is strongly driven by the immediate manager and his or her ability to meet employees' emotional requirements. In this context, it is suggested that people are motivated more by intrinsic factors, such as personal recognition, rather than simply focusing on extrinsic factors, such as compensation. The following ideas can be executed with very little cost for everyone and anyone….  Invite successful teams to present their project achievements to top management.  Start a staff appreciation program. Award points for positive traits. Points may be redeemed for small prizes or special privileges.  Plan a surprise achievement celebration for a staff member or team.  Pass on the praise. If you hear a positive remark about a person, repeat it to that person as soon as possible--perhaps via email. . Publish a "kudos" column in your newsletter. Ask staff to submit kudos for their peers.  Call an employee to your office to thank them.  Express interest in your staff members' professional development or personal accomplishments like Mohan participated in the Mumbai Marathon.  Establish relationships between staff and upper management. One idea: send new employees out to lunch with the company president.  Mail thank you notes to employees who work long hours for a special project/crisis and start a program to curtail needless late working as well  Allow employees to select their next assignments. If you can allow employees to choose their work, they will be more engaged and dedicated.  Designate successful teams and employees as office consultants.  Give employees an extra long lunch break on occasion or convert this into a surprise party or celebration of a company’s achievement
  • 6.  establish a real generous Award to recognize employees who consistently do their job well…. This should make the others jealous atleast !!! #5 - TRUST Trust isn’t something you can buy. Trust is something you earn. It’s based on a set of behaviors that can be learned, practiced, and mastered. It’s a commitment that fundamentally informs how people think about and interact with customers, suppliers, and coworkers. In time, it becomes an organization’s way of being. An interesting trend observed in most companies is that the employee perceptions drop after spending 6 months in the organization. It highlights the challenge in managing new hire expectations and the possible gap in employer brand promise and the actual experience. The change is largely related to credibility of the commitments made by management, openness in communication with seniors and recognition of work. When leaders work diligently to keep the lines of communication open, involve employees in the planning of work that impacts them, provide employees with proper tools and resources, and consistently recognize exemplary job performance - all of these elements contribute to creating a high level of trust on both sides of the fence. In a good company , trust should manifests itself in every relationship. Managers believe that employees want to be productive, encouraging them to participate in the business. Employees act like owners. They’re enthusiastic and passionate about their work and the company’s mission. In a high-trust environment, people cooperate and collaborate, leading to positive workplace interactions, higher profits, and greater productivity. MASTER KEY ….ONE SIZE /FITS ALL? Please note that every organization is different. There is a crying need to fine
  • 7. tune their engagement initiatives. employees in different demographic groups feel differently about what's important to be emotionally engaged with their employer. Three key differences are … career stage; employee gender and tenure of employment within an organization need special attention and appropriate action. Career starters are more engaged emotionally through: 1. professional support by their immediate manager 2. organization communication about its direction 3. organization values and behaviors that they support 4. organization commitment to improving operating systems 5. organization commitment to high performance 6. organization focus on team performance Employees with more established careers are more engaged emotionally through:  trust and respect for their immediate manager  high performance standards for the organization  understanding how organization strategies are met  fair HR policies and procedures  their organization reducing risk and acting responsibly New starters are more engaged emotionally through:  the relationship with their immediate manager  effective communication in the organization  organizational performance  a customer service culture within the organization  the organization reducing risk Longer serving employees are more engaged emotionally through:  the organization's long term strategies and aims  HR policies and practices
  • 8.  plans and projects for organizational long term success This is not an exhaustive list or a one lasting solution …. EMPLOYEE ENGAGMENT is a moving target. Creativity & innovation ( a buzz word) today is needed also in employee engagement… Remember what Peter Senge mentions in The Learning Organisation”… what is the best today will be common-place tomorrow…” GIVE ME YOUR FEEDBACK… we could have a compendium of best practices of Indian companies… To know how they invent & reinvent ways to delight their employees. Best wishes Wilfred Monteiro Weekly knowledge journal to client companies, seminar participants & well wishers of SYNERGY MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATES, MUMBAI website: www.synergymanager.net Synergy Review respects your privacy, if you don't wish to receive any such unsolicited communication from us, mark DELETE in the caption & reply to us