5 Team Engagement Drivers to Motivate Employees

More than half of today’s employees love the jobs they do. But they may not be as excited about the places they work or, more significantly, the management team.

A recent study shows that 56% of employees have a sense of belonging, which means they enjoy their work and connect with their colleagues. But only 21% believe they are a priority to their employers. The “warm fuzzies” people feel for their jobs isn’t reciprocated by management. At least, employees don’t believe it is.

Many organizations need better ways to drive team engagement and, most importantly, show their employees they play an important role in the company’s success. These five team engagement drivers are shown to improve happiness and increase retention.

Ace Workforce Technologies’ Training Specialist Pamela R. Swanson recently hosted a session discussing these team engagement strategies and more. Download the complete webinar here: Enhancing the Employee Experience.

Define Employee Purpose

Employees often come into an organization with their own idea of what their purpose should be. When that is in alignment with the HR department’s vision for that role, great things happen. Some employees, however, may need some guidance to find their purpose. Taking the time and working with employees to define that purpose yields amazing dividends. “When you fill your purpose in your world, it drives you to do a good job,” says Swanson. “If your purpose is also your passion, there’s no limit to what you can do.”

Provide Training and Opportunities for Growth

Training is a crucial part of team engagement. Education and assessment through a Learning Management System gives employees the tools they need to succeed and shows them how well they are accomplishing company-wide, or personal, goals and objectives.

With these programs in place, your organization must have room for advancement for those showing aptitude and excellence. “If you don’t have room for growth, they will leave,” Swanson says.

Provide Opportunities for Autonomy

Guidance and training gives employees clear and measurable goals. Empowering employees to make decisions and improvements also leads to greater team engagement. We talked in-depth about autonomy in Part 1 of our two-part series on employee engagement, but it bears repeating as one of the five effective team engagement strategies.

Encourage Employees to Make an Impact

Millennials and the up-and-coming Gen Z want to make a difference in their workplace and beyond. A Forbes article stated that 68% of millennials want to make a difference in the world. Of course, companies focused on sustainability such as green building, as well as healthcare and certain high-tech companies, have an inherent advantage there.

But any company can give its employees the means and opportunities to make a difference by offering PTO and other benefits for volunteering, participating in company-wide volunteer initiatives, and creating a culture of thinking beyond the bottom line.

You can also empower employees to make an impact within your organization. Encourage employees to embrace their pet projects, mentor others, and step up to leadership roles when they spot opportunities for change.

Create Opportunities for Connection through your Organizational Mission

What are your company’s core values? It’s a big question. And the answer can help you increase connections and team engagement throughout your organization.

It starts with hiring. Once you’re clear on your company’s core values and mission statement, you can hire employees whose personal vision and mission align with your organization.

LinkedIn’s Workplace Culture report revealed 86 percent of millennials would potentially take less pay to work at a company whose mission and values align with their own.

Once you’ve recruited employees who embody your core values, take steps to recognize employees who are living your organizational mission every day. If one of your core values is stellar customer service, and you see an employee using their autonomy to approve a customer request, you can recognize that.

Ace Workforce’s Employee Communications Dashboard lets employees publicly recognize and praise each other for behavior in alignment with the company’s mission and vision.

Whatever methods you choose to reward behavior, make sure they are consistent, specific, and personalized to the employee. Many HR directors find that intrinsic rewards work better—and cost less—in the long run than monetary rewards.

Team Engagement Starts with Individual Employees

Better team engagement begins with putting the right individuals on a team. Find employees whose ideals align with your core values, give them opportunities to fulfill their purpose within your organization, and provide them with room to grow and you’ll create loyal, engaged employees.


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