Employee Engagement is King

Employee Engagement is King
Leadership’s role in the Employee Engagement Equation

Yazad Dalal,
Head of HCM, Oracle APAC, @yazad

 

Welcome to the first of seven blog posts where we will explore the findings of a recent Employee Engagement study conducted by Oracle across the Asia Pacific region

 Leaders set the tone for the organisation. They create a powerful first impression during the recruitment process, influence productivity during the on-boarding process, and provide direction for performance management.  

In the world of HR, many of us talk about employee engagement, and the intrinsic link between engagement and productivity. But, how many of us truly understand the reasons why?

In the study, we explored what employee engagement is really composed of. What we found were seven key factors that contribute to employee engagement.

Leadership is the first of these factors we will explore.

Leadership

Leaders set the tone for the organisation. They create a powerful first impression during the recruitment process, influence productivity during the on-boarding process, and provide direction for performance management. In many ways, the quality of the employee working experience is reflected in their belief and trust in leadership.

Employee Engagement - Leadership

Less than half of our survey respondents (49%) said their leaders are available and approachable, and the same number said they have confidence in the leadership of their company. Clearly, organizations have a lot of work to do to find the right leaders that instill the values and culture they need to improve employee sentiment.

So what can today’s leaders do to directly impact and improve engagement? Here are six key actions you need to take, based on the results of our global survey:

  • Get more involved with employees directly because those interactions can have a major impact on both employee sentiment and feelings of well-being.
  • Communicate the importance and value of each individual’s work to help them to better understand how the work that they do fits into the bigger picture, and show them the impact their efforts have on business success.
  • Set an example of how best to communicate with those who directly report to you, conduct reports, and deliver recognition. This should be on a constant basis, not just during an annual performance review.
  • Remain extremely accessible so that people at the ground level (or those in large businesses) don’t feel disconnected from the leadership, nor that their voices can’t be heard by senior leaders.
  • Be actively involved in the working lives of new employees from the day they start. Show that you care and are genuinely interested in them as people with real values and interests, not just workers. They can set the pace for a new hire’s success better than anyone else in the business.
  • Use technology and digital experiences to stay in touch with everyone. Today there are more ways than ever for leaders to stay in touch with employees and influence their working experiences. By utilizing tools like instant messaging, videoconferencing, and mobile collaboration apps, you can deliver the frequent contact and information. Also, don’t underestimate the value of social networking to rally and increase employee engagement with a company whether it’s around a social cause or using gamificiation techniques to drive towards a business goal.

This reinforces what great leaders already know - the relationship between managers and employees is a long-term partnership, and only through continued open communication can the two parties stay aligned.