What Is Employee Engagement?

"The success of a company is determined by its employee engagement level. Staff involvement is the highest level of satisfaction and loyalty. An engaged employee not only does their job efficiently and professionally but also motivates their colleagues to do the same. They initiate new methods for effective problem solving and achieving strategic goals. The employee works better, puts extra enthusiasm in their activities, promotes fresh ideas, attracts consumers, and increases their interest."

Employers often wonder how to increase profit. Unfortunately, not many of them consider motivating the employees an important factor. However, your profit and success directly depend on the people on your team. The more efficiently they work, the higher the company’s performance. Employee engagement ideas for small companies are especially important.

15 Employee Engagement Ideas

Bond and bring your employees together

1. Positive Reinforcement

Build a culture of rewards. When your employees feel as though they are kicking goals on a daily basis their motivation to achieve will be higher. In fact, consistent studies have found that positive reinforcement is closely linked to employee performance. Offering employees recognition, rewards and reinforcement has a direct effect on their motivation levels, engagement, productivity, and retention, according to Dr. David Ballard of the American Psychological Association. Praise someone for finishing a task on time. Show you appreciate late nights with a day in lieu. Rewarding desirable behavior will not only enhance your employee’s self-confidence but strengthen motivation and productivity.


2. Encourage Cross-Functional Collaboration

In today’s global economy, it’s important to have agile, cross-functional teams to respond to rapid industry changes on-demand. Not only is this mobility crucial for forward-thinking businesses in future, but it’s a key way to drive employee engagement. Collaboration is important for employees to feel included and engaged. Studies show teams that share leadership responsibilities, interpersonal interactions and a cross-functional mentality have lower levels of conflict and stress, and higher levels of overall satisfaction. Encouraging cross-functional collaboration means breaking down internal silos and stepping out of traditional hierarchical team structures. Intrinsic in cross-functionality is the idea that anyone in the organization can contribute their skills to a problem – regardless of their seniority or tenure.


3. Games and Challenges

Too much work makes Jack a dull boy. Well, it’s not only Jack but even your employees go through the same when they’re entitled to the same monotonous work each and every day. But adding some jinx to their daily work in the form of challenges or encouraging them to indulge in some indoor games would just do the job. Here, you can throw them some health challenges too and also plan on incentivizing such challenges to ensure their participation. Thus, This will help you gamify your workplace that would keep up your employees’ spirit. Thus, ensuring a satisfied and engaged workforce.


4. Encourage Employees to Volunteer

Encouraging your employees to take part in voluntary services is another way to engage them. It’s sheer human nature that when we give something out of our own will, it returns back to us in the form of joy and peace to our mind. You can encourage your employees to take part in community cleaning services or take care of elderlies at an old age home. It’ll help your employees rejuvenate themselves from the hectic schedule which they otherwise follow. It is when employees have a free mind they can give their best at work. Also, it’ll lift your organisation’s image and earn goodwill for your brand.


5. Yoga classes

Yoga can help improve fitness of both the body and mind. Offering yoga classes to employees can be a great reward, since it can help them feel focused at the start of the day or unwind after a hard day’s work.


6. Music lessons

Enriching your employees’ personal life and hobbies can only lead to better work in the office. Has a teammate always wanted to learn the piano, ukulele, or trumpet? Sign them up with the local music school and encourage them to show off their new skills with a mini talent showcase.


7. Sponsor an individual or team in a race

It’s especially meaningful when a company recognizes an employee’s personal passions and hobbies. If that passion is running, why not sponsor their admission fee in a race? Or a whole team, if they’re interested! From 5Ks up to marathons, these races often contribute to important causes and charities as well, making it a double-hitter of a meaningful gift.


8. Celebrate Your Staff: Birthdays, Accomplishments, etc.

Celebrating special occasions like birthdays, work anniversaries or others is very important for keeping your employees in a good mood. However, amidst the busy schedule, these occasions often go overlooked. And this may sometimes lead to a negative impact on an employees’ emotions associated with his or her workplace. But as an employer when you remember and celebrate your employees’ special occasions, it makes them feel happy. Further, it boosts the camaraderie shared by all within your workplace and also creates a positive work environment. It is when your employees are happy you can expect the best out of them in every sense.


9. Take Your Team Out for Ice Cream

On a hot, sunny day, just about everyone can attest to wanting to be outside ... instead of within the confines of an office. While there's no getting around the fact that the work week must go on, it never hurts to go out of your way to give your staff a break from the pressure. If the heat is too much, cool them off. There's no better solution than to take your team out for ice cream. Going out for ice cream is not only an excellent way to beat the heat, but it'll give you and your team a chance to catch up and chat about things that might not come up just hanging around the office. It's a low-cost method of allowing your team to step away from the action and take a breather, and you can make it a regular thing during the summer if the idea resonates with your staff. It's just one more aspect of the day that your employees can look forward to, which can have a number of positive effects on engagement levels.


10. Hold an Awards Night

The sky's the limit in terms of how you can plan an awards night for your organization. You can do it in the comfort of your own office ... but why not rent out a space and really make it a party? Live music, catering, and anything else you can think of (themes come to mind) ... will all help to make your awards ceremony a hit, and you can pull off a party like this without spending too much money if you plan things out ahead of time. Just be sure you're creative with the awards categories! Again, ask you're employees about award categories and even let them vote on who should win awards. But remember to keep it in good fun.


11. Bring in Motivational Speakers Every Month / 3 Months

If you've ever seen a good motivational speaker work their magic, chances are you already know just how effective they can be at helping to improve employee engagement / inspiration / motivation / whatever. Motivational speakers help to remind your employees just how vital a role they serve within their organization, and their positivity can often be exactly what the doctor ordered in terms of improving levels of engagement. Plan to have a different motivational speaker come in each month, and structure the visits in a way that will benefit your employees the most. In choosing an individual to come in and speak, it's essential that you take the interests and culture of your staff into consideration. Do your homework. Ask for references. If your employees are into music, consider bringing in a professional musician as a speaker; sports fans will respond well to local athletes. The possibilities for tailoring your motivational speaker program to best fit your organization are many, and the more focused you can get, the better.


12. Have a Potluck Lunch

Throughout any busy work week, it's common for employees to want to branch out and do their own thing for lunch. While there's nothing wrong with people getting a little solo time in during the afternoon, communal lunches can be a lot of fun, not to mention beneficial to employee engagement. Holding a potluck lunch is a great way to get the team together and also helps everyone to save a bit of money in comparison to going out for lunch. Potlucks only work when they're structured and planned, so if you're just now introducing this idea to your staff, be sure that everyone is well-aware of when and where the lunch will take place, as well as what everyone needs to bring. The planning process is half the fun, as it allows staff members to come up with unique ways in which they can contribute to the party.


13. Take Your Staff to a Local Sporting Event

Just about every city has a number of local sports teams that play regularly, and tickets are usually inexpensive at the minor level. One great way to improve levels of employee engagement at your company is to take everyone out to a local game once a month, or even buy a season pass for your company. Many minor league teams will work with you in regards to pricing, and it's difficult to beat the experience of taking the entire office out for a game. And if you contact the sports team ahead of time, maybe you'll even get to meet some of the players. Take photos! People can be finicky regarding which sports they're interested in, so before setting out to make any major purchases (tickets or passes), be sure to at least ask everyone in detail about the team/sport they'd most like to go see. It's not always possible to make everyone happy, but you can at least come to find some common ground if you're up-front and take everyone's requests into consideration.


14. Photo or Video Contests

With today's technology, anyone with a smartphone and a good eye can capture something worthwhile. One way that you can help to further improve employee engagement within your organization is to hold an occasional photo or video contest, which can be a lot of fun even for those who have never experimented with a visual medium for creativity in the past. You can structure your contests in a number of different ways. It could be a "just for fun" situation, or you could actually hold a contest in which the photos/videos your employees make end up on your blog, or even as a part of your branding going forward. This is a fun way to get your staff to be more engaged in what's happening around them, and it's a very inexpensive tool for doing so.


15. Karaoke Performance

What better way to get your employees to break out of their shells than to have them get up and sing some karaoke? You can even have a contest for best group karaoke performance. Bonus points if there are feather boas and cowboy hats involved. This works best for a more extroverted group, so if your team isn't into strutting their stuff on stage, consider an idea on this list that caters more toward those personalities.


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