employee engagement ideas

8 Essential Employee Engagement Ideas To Boost Your Team

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Every company needs a regular supply of employee engagement ideas, or it could experience more churn than a pint of creamy Haagen-Dazs.

Workers are feeling less connected to their workplaces by as much as 14 percent every year. Before a CEO knows it, her desk could be piled with letters of resignation. And each of those letters will end up lowering the business’s bank account.


She has to find someone new, train them, and get them up to speed.

That’s expensive.

Employee Engagement Ideas Cut Turnover

Every team member who walks out the door takes more than just their stuff with them. They allow about 20 percent of their salary to fly into the wind because that’s what a company spends on a replacement.

Is it any wonder that C-level executives and managers become frustrated?

But this is a reversible trend.

The key to keeping workers is to brainstorm and get behind eight employee engagement ideas that work.

1. Gather Employees for Social Activities

One way to win the hearts of employees is to commit to a cause they can get behind.

Ninety percent of participants in a Stanford Study said working for a company that supported a cause was more important than making more money. This means it’s a good idea to get behind causes.

There are two methods to determine which cause fits a company’s style:

In the first, companies consider their mission statement and products. Then, they look at potential connections with charities and fundraisers. For instance, a water treatment center might support clean water initiatives for children in third-world countries.

The second way is by surveying employees. Plenty of workers already support organizations. Businesses can piggyback on what their people are already doing.

Regardless of how a business chooses charities or initiatives, it should build team events around the cause.

From putting together backpacks for kids to working at the local food bank, employees will bond over these experiences. And that decreases their desire to leave.

2. Spend Money on Group Learning

Forty-one percent of Baby Boomers, 44 percent of Generation Xers, and 59 percent of Millennials want the chance to actively learn while working.

Knowing this, some employers have put part of their budgets into paying for conferences, conventions, workshops, lunch-and-learns, and even degree programs.

Of course, collaborative learning doesn’t have to be formal. Hosting a motivational speaker to talk with employees, or hiring a productivity guru to teach time management can turn employees into loyal workers.

3. Stay on Top of New Perks

Not every company can offer a long list of benefits and perks. However, most can add something new to the mix as one of their employee engagement ideas.

Some of the most modern types of add-ons include extended paid parental leave for new moms and dads, pet insurance options, partial tuition reimbursement, and wellness stipends. Just knowing an employer is putting employees first sends a clear, positive signal.

4. Host Friendly Internal Competitions

A little competition isn’t such a bad thing. In fact, cooperative competition is linked to improved creativity and effective output.

Friendly competitions could mean anything. Some companies give bonuses or gifts to the person who solves the most customer problems in a month. Others offer half-days to the team that figures out how to shave the most dollars out of the budget without losing quality.

The goal is for the competition to be fun and enjoyable. Otherwise, workers will feel like they’re being forced into unhealthy and unwanted battle with colleagues.

A good way to make sure that no one feels uncomfortable is to ask employees their thoughts ahead of time.

5. Experiment with Flexible Schedules

When asked, 63 percent of employees said that they thought the typical eight-hour, onsite work week was losing favor. Many firms have begun to try flexible scheduling.

What is flexible scheduling? It can be letting people work from home sometimes. It could also be allowing workers to come in early and leave early.

The biggest challenge to flexible schedules? Making sure work still gets done.

This strategy can only be used for non-customer-facing personnel. Anyone expected to be present to serve customers can enjoy a different perk.

6. Reward Company Longevity

Long-term employees are corporate anchors. They need special consideration when planning employee engagement ideas.

Great ways to reciprocate years of service include:

  • parking spots closer to the front door
  • books and courses
  • memberships (e.g., health clubs, fruit-of-the-month-club)
  • trips to national and international conferences
  • time off or sabbaticals

Even organizations on tight budgets can give loyal employees the chance to leave a few hours occasionally.

7. Ask Employees to Become Social Brand Ambassadors

About three-quarters of small businesses maintain social presences. However, those same companies may not have the resources to hire a social media strategist.

They don’t have to.

Companies can ask key workers to become weekly or monthly “brand ambassadors” on social channels. The workers add something interesting, maybe even personal.

For instance, an employee may want to discuss a social cause he feels deserves attention, and then upload a video to Instagram. Another may take the chance to share a poem she wrote about being a grown-up when she was 10.

This shouldn’t be a chore, but a fun assignment that has other perks, such as a small bonus or gift card.

8. Celebrate Special Occasions

People appreciate downtime, even if it’s just for a morning breakfast or afternoon snack. Birthdays and work anniversaries are great times to boost morale by celebrating with a little food and fun.

It’s best if one person keeps a calendar of all special occasions, rather than trying to control it by group effort. That way, no one’s big moments slip by. The last thing any company wants to do is forget a birthday!

A Large Supply of Employee Engagement Ideas

As the years pass, companies everywhere will develop more employee engagement ideas. Those that do so first have a better chance of attracting and retaining talented people ready to stay for a while.

For more fresh business productivity and management ideas, read the essential efficiency tools owners need.

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