Thursday, December 3, 2009

What is Engagement -- more perspectives

From Diversity Inc.

Employee engagement is defined as the degree to which workers feel job satisfaction and an emotional connection to the success of their businesses, resulting in improved productivity, innovation and retention. Highly engaged employees use their discretionary efforts to "go the extra mile" to do whatever it takes to ensure the organization meets its business goals.

Only 29 percent of workers are actively engaged at work, according to a 2008 Employee Engagement report by BlessingWhite. Employees with the highest level of engagement perform 20 percent better and are 87 percent less likely to leave the organization, according to a survey by TowersPerrin. A study by the Hay Group found engaged employees were as much as 43 percent more productive.

Engagement varies widely by race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability and other workplace-diversity factors. Companies that have highly developed diversity-management initiatives have higher engagement in these traditionally underrepresented groups, according to research by DiversityInc.

What factors most contribute to employee engagement? Numerous studies have found these are the key factors:

Corporate Culture: A corporate culture that puts priority on trust and respect for all, effectiveness of communication in the company (organizational communication), diversity of opinions and perspectives, a safe working environment, a company with branding as a leader in diversity and corporate social responsibility

Management: Relationships with supervisor, relationships/recognition with/from upper management, overall recognition and praise, coaching, mentoring and feedback, clear expectations, clear and consistent performance reviews

Peers: Relationships with colleagues/teammates, membership in employee-resource groups

Training: Opportunity to attend external seminars/training, access to technology and training, resources to complete the job well

Personal: Real and perceived career-advancement opportunities, opportunity to participate in decision making, work/life balance, compensation, alignment of personal values with company values, job security

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