Engagement: it’s an important component of any human relationship. Before marriage, hopeful lovers commit to “engagement” before exchanging vows. The engagement is a promise to see out the outcome of marriage, and just as in romantic relationships, engagement is a commitment employees make to see out the outcome of workplace productivity. Furthermore, acknowledgement is an essential factor to ensure effective engagement, in romantic and employer-employee relationships alike. When done right, recognition of your employees can be the single most important driver of engagement, and will lead to tangible motivation and reinforcement of company values. This is more important now than ever before, as employee engagement is extraordinarily low, and it continues to downtrend .
Creating a socially cohesive workplace culture
The best way to utilise the engaging power of acknowledgement is to encourage your team to recognise the accomplishments of their colleagues. It has been shown that 77% of employees actually tie work engagement to the relationships they have with their co-workers. Investing in company culture to encourage effective co-worker relationships becomes necessary, rather than a nice bonus. With the rise of websites such as Glassdoor, it is very important to improve the workplace culture of your company, to ensure attraction and retention of good workers.
Employee recognition for retention
In the rise of the digital age, the job market is incredibly expansive. Anyone with access to the internet can deliver their resume worldwide to be considered for roles. With the rates of employee engagement being so low, it can be readily assumed that most workers are either considering leaving their current work or actively looking for roles. Therefore, it pays to ensure your workers are engaged to ensure retention. A readily effective strategy to improve engagement is through acknowledgment. If you make this highly visible, it contributes to the company culture, showing you to be a leader to give congratulations where they are warranted. Public affirmations also set you up to be a role model to encourage others to do the same, thus creating that workplace culture of employees acknowledging their colleagues.
Acknowledgement drives productivity
Engaged employees are 21% more productive, and they inspire the co-workers around them to also be more engaged, and subsequently, more productive (3). Similarly, disengaged, unmotivated and unproductive employees can provide a toxic, distracting work environment which de-motivates those around them. Unfortunately, a disgruntled employee is unlikely to reach the notice of a manager until is perhaps too late. For this reason, it is important to ensure that gratitude is a regular part of the work space, a frequently given gift which lifts the spirits of each individual employee. Provide this often enough, and it will be infectious, bleeding out into employees congratulating their co-workers as well. A useful technique is a weekly callout for managers and employees to participate in, and acknowledges the good work around. This public announcement of gratitude is the most effective way to improve engagement in the workplace.