How to inspire your employees and increase their engagement

Posted by Bob Corlett on February 25, 2015

Gallup's State of the American Workplace survey reports that 70 percent of U.S. workers are not engaged at work.

If that's a startling statistic for you, and you want more engaged employees, don't hire a consultant to design new engagement initiatives. Instead, demonstrate your own engagement.

I recommend you ditch your engagement projects. Far too many executives mistakenly chase engagement numbers to drive business performance, when they should instead be rolling up their own sleeves and jumping into the task.

Why engagement matters

Engagement is a side benefit of success, not a thing to chase on its own. From my vantage point as an executive recruiter, it's painfully obvious that sustained employee engagement does not flow from conducting employee surveys that ask whether people have a friend at work. Nor does it flow from superficial stuff like your company picnic. Engagement flows from the work. It flows from creating a business environment that allows people to do their best work, and then hiring the people who love the work you need done.

To inspire top performance from your employees, they need to know what's important about their jobs and why they're working to achieve results. They need to know how their performance will be measured -- the framework and context in which you consider their successes or failures. They need to know what tools you will provide to do the work, and how much support they will have from you.

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Topics: Human Resources, Hiring Managers