Every leader who has had to face a significant crisis or to steer her organization into a radically different direction will tell you that clarity of vision and strong capability won’t do without the essential ingredient of a deeply engaged workforce. Attracting, growing and retaining talent that cares to go the extra mile without losing trust and faith is not easy but there are well established best practices, rooted in social and psychological science, that organizations of any size can adopt to move the needle closer to where they need to be. Building on a solid foundation of trust, organizations can nurture satisfaction, commitment and pride through leadership practices, participative management, communication, and recognition. We advise, coach, and collaborate closely with leaders to design and implement engagement-building solutions. By holding their managers accountable for cultivating employee engagement, senior leader not only have an opportunity to win the hearts and minds of their existing colleagues but also of high potential talent outside the organization.
An important aspect of building robust employee engagement is to first diagnose the current state of your workforce’s engagement. Although engagement surveys have been adopted by the large majority of Fortune 500 companies many still rely on off-the-shelf assessment surveys with the same cookie cutter items and neglect to listen to the Voice of their employees. A few years ago, we conducted a thorough analysis of 8,000 survey comments from an employee engagement survey at a premier digital retailer. We integrated the learnings from our analysis with the numerical data to produce over 150 different reports that senior management used in a series of Town Hall meetings and business planning sessions.