Everyday challenges in keeping employees engaged

Everyday challenges in keeping employees engaged

Here’s a story that highlights the challenges employers face in keeping employees engaged in their work. Read on and then consider the questions I pose.

I caught an early commuter train into London recently. It was delayed and soon became overcrowded. Before long it was at capacity, almost to the point where our private spaces were in danger of being invaded. The carriage was heaving.

Here’s a conversation between three people that I could not avoid over hearing,

“I couldn’t do this this journey everyday”.

“Me neither. How much was your ticket?”

“Not bothered. The company are paying”.

“Have you seen that new HR system? We’ve got to put in all our personal information again.”

“You’re joking! What, again?”

“No, I am not joking. They want to know everything about you. But it’s no different from the last system. The screens do exactly the same”.

“Have you read the stuff about the training course we’re going on today?”.

“No. But my first question is what time does it end?”

“I’m not interested in training. I just want to go and do my job and come home”.

“No one’s told me anything about the course. I’ve been told to go along”.

“Will you be claiming your expenses today?”

“What expenses?”

“The £10.00 allowance because you are out of the office all day”.

“But lunch is being provided.”

“Doesn’t matter. You can still claim. I am”.

“Right. I’ll do that. The company has plenty of money. They won’t miss it”.

“I hope they don’t do that Secret Santa stuff again this year. Do you know what I got last Christmas? A dog chew….”

“Probably cost £1 out of Poundland”.

“Yeah. I think you’re right. I spent at least £5 on someone else. The cheek of it”.

“Like I said. I just come to work and go home again”.

So how would you gauge the levels of employee engagement at their company? Would these feelings be expressed on their employee survey? If they were, would their feedback be acted upon? Last question, what has their organisation done or not done to create the way these people feel and act? We know employee engagement is a two-way process between employees and their employers.

As an expert in employee engagement and member of Engage for Success, I feel that these are serious questions to address. As employers we must go beyond the headline survey data and tackle the underlying causes of disengagement. In times where there is such great uncertainty in our world, so much division in our society and so many challenges facing us at work, our role to champion employee engagement is more important than ever before.

Paul Beesley, Director & Senior Consultant, Beyond Theory


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