Why you should be prioritising employee engagement and how to engage your employees

Employees are the foundation of any organisation. Employees provide the labour and know-how required to run a business. They also help drive business growt

Employees are the foundation of any organisation. Employees provide the labour and know-how required to run a business. They also help drive business growth through ideas, innovation and collaboration - which are essential for staying ahead of competitors. Employees are your greatest resource, but they can be your greatest challenge as well. Your employees are not just another cost you need to factor into business planning; they’re the face of your organisation to customers, suppliers and other partners as well as the people who will tell others about you. As such, everything from employee engagement to company culture and brand image is important when it comes to hiring and retaining talented staff. 

Why is employee engagement important?

Engaged employees are key to driving business success. Engaged employees are more likely to stay longer, take on new responsibilities, and use their skills to help other people. Engaged employees are also more likely to feel satisfied with their job and the work environment. 

Your organisation's survival and growth heavily depend on employee engagement. A staggering 80% of companies report that employee engagement is a key factor in their company’s success. 

Engaged employees are also more likely to be productive. One study showed that engaged employees are 34% more productive than non-engaged employees. For organisations that are growing and changing, engaged employees are critical for success.

What drives employee engagement?

Employee engagement is often heavily related to ‘work-life’ balance. It’s common to expect a certain amount of work from employees and to let them balance their personal and professional lives with their own expectations. 

However, if too much investment is put into work-life balance, the end result can be a loss of engagement – employees are doing the same tasks but with less energy. 

In order for engagement to be successful, employees need to be enthusiastic about what they do. They also need to feel supported by their managers and colleagues. When these elements are in place, employees are more likely to be engaged. 

Other factors that can impact engagement include work culture, the recognition of achievements, and flexibility with working hours. 

Management style can also have an impact, as can company leadership. If the CEO is a hands-on leader and the leaders in middle and upper management are remote, then those at the top feel less connected to the work that’s being done.

Learn to spot the signs of disengaged employees

Employees who are disengaged are not necessarily unhappy about their job or the organisation. They may just not be engaged. If you can recognise the signs of disengagement, then you can try to get employees back into a more engaged state. 

Some of the more common signs of disengagement are:

  • Lack of initiative: employees who don’t seem to want to take on new tasks or contribute their ideas to the organisation. 
  • Low morale: while this can occur in many workplaces when it’s present it usually means that either the organisation is not supporting employees or they have low morale in their own work. 
  • Not working towards clear goals: when employees aren’t clear on their goals it can easily lead to disengagement. 

It’s important for employees to understand the why behind what they do. How can you get disengaged employees back into the culture of engagement? 

Here are some simple ways to improve engagement that you can try: 

  • Make it easier for employees to identify ways they can contribute. 
  • Offer training that helps employees learn new skills or improve on existing ones. 
  • Keep an open line of communication with employees. 
  • Help employees understand how their work impacts the business. 
  • Reward and recognise employees for their work. 
  • Give feedback on a timely basis.

Strategies for building an engaged culture

When employees feel connected to their work and the organisation, they are more likely to stay engaged. 

To build an engaged culture, you need to start with a strong foundation and take time to cultivate relationships with key stakeholders. 

Here are some engagement strategies to consider: 

  • Set expectations: when employees know what they should be doing and how they should be doing it, they have a better chance of feeling connected. Set expectations around what goals employees should be pursuing and make sure they understand the why behind each decision they make.
  • Make space for employees to be leaders: if you make space for employees to lead, they will take the initiative to do so. Make sure you give them the tools they need to be successful at this including training and mentorship programs. 
  • Build a culture of openness and transparency: when employees feel connected to the organisation and their managers, they’re more likely to feel an obligation to the organisation. Create incentives for employees and managers to share information and make it easy for them to do so.


Employee engagement is important because it affects the success of a company. Engaged employees are more likely to stay with a company, stay productive, and create long-term relationships with their colleagues. 

When your team feel supported and connected to their work, they’re more likely to accomplish their goals and have more energy available for their personal lives.

Employee engagement is challenging because it requires you to find a way to engage with your employees and achieving that can be difficult. It’s important to keep in mind that engaging employees takes time and effort, but should never be left to forget about.

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