Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Employee Satisfaction vs. Employee Engagement

A number of factors affect employees’ overall satisfaction with their jobs. These factors include their relationships with their peers, immediate supervisors and senior management, their impressions of the leadership ability of senior management, their ongoing work tasks and activities, the availability of resources to support them in their jobs, the perceived effectiveness of communications within the organization, the job development and advancement opportunities available to them and their perception of how equitably the organization’s pay policies are applied.

In other words, an employee satisfaction score reflects both the immediate impact of employees’ day-to-day work environment and the impact of their relationships with others in the organization on their sense of well-being. In contrast, employee engagement reflects their emotional commitment to the organization, their willingness to go “above and beyond” the call of duty to help the organization succeed, and their desire to remain with the organization for the long term. However, dissatisfaction with their work environment can often derail their sense of commitment to the organization, which may lead them to seek other opportunities.

In an ideal situation, you want to have both highly satisfied and highly engaged employees. However, in reality, our studies have shown that employees are often highly committed to the organization where they work but they are not as highly satisfied with their jobs. Determining what is undermining employee satisfaction in your workplace is the first step toward building an engaged workforce.

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