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Sage Advice:
Turning Disengaged Employees Into Brand Ambassadors
Helen Perry
by Helen Perry, 
 
Corporate & Personal Image Consultant   
 
Employees are undoubtedly a company's greatest asset.  They serve your customers, lead teams and create strategies for future growth.  However, according to 2018 Gallup research, 85% of the workforce is disengaged.  

What constitutes a disengaged worker?  
*  Mentally on auto pilot with little or no passion for those they serve
*  Emotionally removed
*  Higher rates of absenteeism, taking more sick days
*  Likely to be seeking other employment

In the U.S., workers' lack of enthusiasm is costing our economy roughly half a trillion dollars a year in lost productivity.

Factors that measure engagement:

*  How important and recognized employee feels his/her contribution is
*  Level of enthusiasm and inspiration the employee possesses about the organization.  
*  Feeling of fairness with regard to compensation

A survey by TINYpulse found that overwork and burnout, micromanagement and poor culture generally led to employees looking for a new job.  A survey by Ricoh - Empowering Digital Workplaces - found that employees were more likely to look for a new job if their company didn't prioritize technology. That same survey revealed that employees were drawn to organizations that invested in new technology (62%).  Nearly 60% believed that better technology would have a positive impact on their working day.

Solutions:
1.  Focus on three things: The organization's culture, communication and rewards. Engagement starts at the top and leaders need to invest in a culture of engagement and growth. Employees will be looking to their line managers for leadership, so these executives need to have the right leadership skills to actively engage the people and focus on reinforcing a positive work environment.

2.  Effectively communicate objectives while at the same time taking employees along on the journey. Employees need to know and understand how their contributions make a difference in achieving the company's greater vision.  Communication allows the organization to be held accountable and deliver according to their commitments.  

3.  Success and contribution of employees must be celebrated and recognized in a meaningful and consistent manner.  Focus on the individual by creating clear career paths, growth, and development programs, as well as career advancement planning. While monetary rewards are not seen as a driver of engagement, employees will become disengaged as soon as payment is perceived to be unfair.

The importance of an engaged workforce can't be overstated. Reduce staff turnover, improve productivity, retain more customers and increase your bottom line by connecting with your employees in ways that count.

For a list of training topics and professionalism tips, please email hperry@helen-perry.com.

Helen Perry has a degree in Speech Education.  She is a corporate & personal image consultant to companies and individuals desiring to heighten professional presence and productivity.  2013 and 2014 Pinnacle Award Recipient.  Visit www.helen-perry.com.