In our blog, 'What is team engagement and why does it matter?' we looked at the definition of team engagement, what disengagement might look like in any given business and its impact in terms of productivity.
If you read our blog and recognised some of the issues we identified, then your next question will be how to make things better?
From measuring existing team engagement to proactive measures to implement, we'll give you some steers.
How to measure team engagement?
Only 9% of UK workers feel engaged - compare this with a figure of 16% in Germany and 33% in Romania. When you compare these figures with North America (engagement is at 33%) and South Asia (27%), the UK is certainly lagging behind.
Medium to large scale businesses frequently ask their employees to undertake attitude surveys to collect and assimilate data about team and individual engagement. Along with focus groups the combination of both approaches can provide insight and highlight areas that need to be addressed or practices which need to be adapted in order to enhance team engagement.
What about the smaller companies? Where do you start?
Gallup's Employee Engagement Survey
There's a huge choice of templates which make it easy to set up your own engagement survey. One such example on Survey Monkey asks employees 42 questions.
Gallup has identified 12 key questions which need to be asked:
- I know what is expected of me at work
- I have the materials and equipment I need at work to do my job right
- At work, I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day
- In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work
- My supervisor, or someone at work, seems to care about me as a person
- There is someone at work who encourages my development
- At work, my opinions seem to count
- The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important
- My associates or fellow employees are committed to doing quality work
- I have a best friend at work
- In the last six months, someone at work has talked to me about my progress
- This last year, I have had opportunities at work to learn and grow.
How to improve levels of team engagement?
Key factors in the degree of engagement is related to the quality of relationships within the organisation and the extent to which an individual and team feel supported by management. Both factors will impact on how an employee will assess their job satisfaction, how much enthusiasm and effort they commit to their role and whether they are looking for alternative employment.
There are also other aspects of engagement such as job complexity, opportunities for learning and development and perceived self-autonomy. Feelings around job security will also drive engagement.
We must also count in internal factors: an individual's personality; their own 'built-in' tenacity and resilience and external factors - the organisation's culture; the degree of psychological safety and emphasis on service quality.
Successful team engagement strategies
Successful team engagement strategies will ensure employees appreciate how their contribution impacts on the success of the business. The organisation will need to convey that whilst delivering on its objectives but it will also need to focus on individuals and their wellbeing.
The CIPD has a guide 'Developing managers to support employee engagement' providing factsheets and case studies and a starting point from which to develop successful and sustainable team engagement.
Fundamentally, an individual needs to feel that:
They are receiving frequent recognition - so make a point of demonstrating appreciation for employees who have made a difference, who have gone that 'extra mile' to achieve a goal, a target, or delivered a task well.
Someone cares about me - ask the question "Do you feel you are a valued member of the team?". This will also give you the opportunity to discuss with team members how they want to be treated and managed.
My opinions count - encourage employees to submit ideas and give feedback. Ensure engagement by asking for everyone to give feedback in meetings and most importantly - be seen to act on them.