Employee engagement is always a hot topic, and for good reason. It’s described as an employee’s emotional attachment to their workplace, which influences their willingness to perform well. And it’s why companies around the globe are constantly trying to find new and exciting ways to engage their teams.
The benefits are endless, we know that. For one, engaged workers are much more likely to contribute to the business and its profit. Not to mention, employee engagement reduces absenteeism, according to Gallup by 41% within a company.
It’s all about improving individual employee performance, as well as employee happiness. But have you ever thought about how it might benefit teams specifically?
With all of the hundreds of employee engagement articles out there focusing on individual engagement, many fail to mention how employee engagement can help take teams to new heights. Perhaps it’s the secret to great teamwork 🤔
Project Management Institute says, “Higher levels of engagement lead, not only to greater project performance, but also higher levels of job satisfaction and lower levels of job burnout. Creating a team environment that is challenging, supportive and fulfilling...fosters engagement.”
It’s clear that teamwork and engagement go hand in hand, and improving one, will only benefit the other. Further, “When team members are energetic, dedicated, and absorbed in their work, they will be more effective team members and the team will be seen by project stakeholders as high-performing and successful.”
Here are 5 other ways employee engagement can create teams of operational excellence:
1. Builds team members individually
Every individual employee has his or her own experience, education and opinions. That’s why it’s often difficult to bring together teams of people with vast life differences and expect them to just ‘click’.
Teamwork has to begin with the individual.
Because employee engagement is so unique to each person, when employees feel engaged at work, they’re individually motivated for the better of the team, and are motivated to work on and build their individual strengths within the team.
Employee engagement also brings about a sense of purpose. And having an individual sense of purpose is crucial for team members to understand their specific role within a team, as well as see how their work contributes to the greater picture.
While there’s no ‘i’ in ‘team’, building a powerful team requires that all members play their part and are fully engaged in their work as individuals.
2. Better communication and relationships
One of the biggest signs of a disengaged employee is withdrawal in work and conversations, as well as poor communication. The difference is that engaged employees ask questions and talk with their colleagues in order to get things done.
Highly engaged employees have an improved sense of confidence in themselves and their work abilities.
They are passionate about their work and take pride in it. And because of their passion and motivation, they can easily communicate and share ideas with their fellow team members.
When employee engagement is high, employees share freely and team members are more likely to get along.
This is the basis of how trust is developed too – an essential part of any great team.
Better communication means better understanding, which also means roles and responsibilities aren’t blurred and everyone can successfully get on with their tasks 👍🏼
Sounds like an effective team alright – one that can easily resolve conflicts too.
3. Clearer goals and vision
Because an engaged workforce has a sense of purpose it gives employees a clearer direction of the bigger picture. Having this sense of purpose makes it much easier to work towards common goals within a team. In fact, research indicates that setting goals enable your employees to perform better.
In fact, disengagement can often occur when companies or teams are not transparent and don’t share their values, vision and mission with their employees.
People want to work for a reason and purpose, and they want to know how their specific role contributes to a higher goal.
This is why values-based leadership is so important, especially when building effective teamwork.
When your employees understand your company’s vision and goals, you’ll start to see the business results you’re looking for, as goals will look clear to everyone and not just the higher stakeholders.
You’ll keep the employees that are motivated to take the vision forward, and perhaps lose the ones that aren’t interested – all of which will build and align business towards those goals.
You can get started with these 4 steps to creating a vision, mission and values that engage employees.
4. Helps innovation and creativity
Employee engagement doesn’t mean coming in to do your job and then leave. It means coming in to work to make the business better, and it means going over and above to ensure the work that is delivered is not mediocre.
Motivated and engaged team members are more excited to improve business capabilities, create better business processes, and be a part of change and innovation together. And we all know innovation can be a catalyst for company growth. In fact, the British based market research company, the Cicero Group, recently found that employees who receive regular and meaningful recognition are proactively innovating 33% more than their peers.
What’s more is employee satisfaction is huge in companies of engaged, innovative and creative teams who are ready to make the business better at every opportunity.
In fact, “an engaged employee is 44% more productive than a satisfied worker, but an employee who feels inspired at work is nearly 125% more productive than a satisfied one. The companies that inspire more employees perform better than the rest.”
5. Better retention and employee loyalty
What keeps a team going?
The team members.
As obvious as it may seem, making sure team members stay together and grow as a team is what will keep the team strong and united for as long as possible.
It’s not often that team dynamics work straight away. It often takes time for team members to warm up to each other. That’s why having new team members coming and going, or team members leaving regularly is very unstable for team effectiveness.
Fostering a culture of employee engagement will keep your team alive, motivated and strong as they grow together (and stay together) with time.
There’s no doubt that boosting employee engagement will naturally create a high performing team in numerous different ways. It’s all about having the right strategy in place that can help build employee engagement individually, for the better of the team.
Like we said earlier, teamwork and engagement go hand in hand, and improving one, will only benefit the other.
Don’t have an employee engagement strategy? Try our 30-day free trial and watch your employee engagement levels rise!