Friday 16 Oct 2020 Article

The TakeawayKeeping Employees Career-focused in Difficult Times

The Current State of Employee Engagement

Keeping Employees Career-focused in Difficult Times

Only 8% of UK employees are engaged at work.

Employee engagement is one of the key things that drives motivation, productivity and success, meaning that 92% of employees aren’t working to their full potential and could even be stopping their organisation from reaching it’s potential.

Why are employees so disengaged and how can we, as leaders, help them and retain our talent?

The ‘War for Talent’ Concept

‘War for Talent’, a familiar concept to most HR managers and team leaders, is a result of a vast skill shortage across the UK and falling employee engagement.

Finding talent is getting more and more difficult, but retaining it is even harder. 

Many employers believe that the key to keeping employees career-focused and motivated is simply money. However, 74% of employees would accept a pay cut for the chance to work their dream job.

To win the ‘War for Talent’, employers need to develop and implement an effective employee engagement strategy to ensure they have a dedicated workforce that is focused on propelling their organization to success.

Repercussions Employee Disengagement

What could happen if only 8% of your employees were motivated?

  • Decreased profit
    Organisations with low employee engagement and job satisfaction are 21% less profitable.

  • High employee turnover
    1 in 3 professionals cite boredom and a lack of career progression opportunities as the main reason for leaving their job.

  • Increased absenteeism
    Organisations with a low employee engagement rate face 59% higher absenteeism.

Put simply, without a strong, engaged, focused workforce, organisations will likely struggle to achieve and excel their financial and strategic goals.

So how can you improve your team’s engagement?

3 Methods for Overcoming Employee Disengagement

As a leader, you should not only push employees to produce a high quantity of work but also to inspire and push them to exceed expectations and continually grow and develop.

Here are 3 ways you can overcome employee disengagement:

  1. Professional Development Opportunities
    Providing employees with the opportunity to develop professionally and expand their skill set benefits both the employee and employer; it can instil confidence and motivation in employees, and it provides employers with a more skilled workforce. Showing your dedication to your employees’ development can also build trust and better working relationships.

  2. Career Progression Plans
    Only 29% of employees are happy with the career development opportunities their employers offer. Having a PDP (Personal Development Plan) in place for each employee is an integral part of keeping employees career and growth-focused. Career progression doesn’t necessarily have to be a promotion; allowing employees to supervise a newer employee, assigning them larger projects and encouraging them to aid decision making are all ways of progressing a career without necessarily offering them a promotion and pay rise.

  3. Employee Appreciation and Recognition
    One of the best and arguably easiest ways to boost employee motivation and engagement is to show your appreciation for them and recognise their efforts and achievements. 69% of UK employees say they would work harder if they were better appreciated.  

Engaging a remote team can be even more difficult. Click here for 20 ways to engage with and connect with remote employees.

One of the most important things to remember is that employees are individual, unique people, so having a blanket-approach may not work.

We highly recommend having a 1-1 meeting with each employee about their thoughts on their current professional career, where they want to progress to and how they are going to get there.

3 Quotes that Bring to Light the Value of an Engaged Workforce

  • “When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.” Simon Sinek

  • “To win in the marketplace, you must first win in the workplace.” Doug Contant

  • “Employee investment is an investment we make for the privilege of staying in business” Ian Hutchinson
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