We’ve all heard of The Great Resignation, quiet quitting, slacking off, and ghosting coasting. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, people have left or lost their jobs in droves, receiving government benefits to supplement their lost earnings.
While government-mandated COVID-19 unemployment benefits have primarily stopped, the employment problem doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. Millions of job openings are now available, but fewer people want them. Companies are struggling to find and keep talent for jobs that used to be easy to fill.
The problem extends across entire industries and regions. It’s not limited to the U.S. either; other countries, including the U.K., Australia, and China, are experiencing similar issues.
In today’s world, keeping employees engaged at work has become more challenging. Companies struggle to hold employees’ attention and keep them focused on organizational growth and strategic vision. Disengaged workers are more likely to quit for other opportunities, exacerbating the employers’ problem.
If you’ve seen engagement and productivity on your team dwindling, your business likely needs an engagement jump-start. Let’s consider a few tips for improving worker commitment.
- Bring on the Cross-Training
Employees can grow bored with their current role, quickly losing focus on the job. It’s common to see productivity, quality and efficiency levels decrease as employees become more bored in their daily routine. They may arrive to work late and leave early or frequently take days off.
Recognizing boredom in your employees is critical if you want to prevent their attitude from transferring to your other workers.
To help employees who are struggling with boredom in their roles, schedule time to talk with them. Find out what their interests are and what they’d like to learn and how they see themselves growing in the business. See if they’d be interested in cross-training with other employees to master new responsibilities.
Cross-training is an inexpensive way to increase employee knowledge and discourage complacency. Tackling new challenges and responsibilities tends to reinvigorate employee engagement and it has the added benefit of protecting the organization from knowledge loss if someone decides to leave.
- Start an Important Project
It’s easy for a workplace to grow over-comfortable in their routines. Performing the same tasks can lead to stunted growth and an unfocused workforce. Managers can help alleviate the issue by developing specific goals for each employee or department to work toward.
Hold a meeting with your workers to discuss problems you see in a specific department or the business overall and ask for their input. Look for opportunities for process improvement or projects that can help the business meet its goals.
Once your team identifies all the opportunities, assign specific people to work on each project. Set timelines for project milestones and give employees the leeway to work independently or with colleagues. Schedule regular meetings to go over the progress made toward the goals.
When employees have unique goals they’re responsible for achieving, they’re more likely to put in a revived effort to meet them.
- Find Out What Interests Your Employees
All workers have different interests that excite them. It would help if you regularly conversed with your employees to determine their interests.
Pay close attention to comments they make about their responsibilities. If they express excitement about specific tasks, see how you can build upon their interest by introducing similar duties.
For instance, consider a marketing analyst who has lots of creativity. While most of the worker’s current job concerns data analysis on customer trends and purchases, she expresses interest in projects that involve designing marketing campaigns. You can improve her engagement at work by putting her on the advertising team for the organization’s latest new product.
- Offer Employees Learning and Development Opportunities
Most employees are open to learning new things. They appreciate opportunities for refining existing skills or learning new ones. You can offer your workers a yearly stipend for training courses that interest them or to obtain certifications that will help bolster their careers.
There are lots of online platforms that offer inexpensive classes for individuals to participate in. They don’t require a lot of time, and both employees and employers benefit from the skills that the courses teach.
Allowing your employees to take the courses at work is even better. Employees won’t need to take time away from other essential responsibilities, like family, to improve their skills.
Employee Engagement Is an Ongoing Process
Most people are attracted to challenges. When they don’t feel challenged or have no opportunities to show off their skills, they’re more likely to feel bored in their job and feel like they’re making a less valuable contribution.
Managers must recognize that performing routine duties, day in and day out, will eventually lead to employee disengagement. When workers become too comfortable in their routine, they tend to lose interest in the job. Spice things up by introducing new learning, development, and growth options.
If you are interested in revamping your performance review process and/or giving your onboarding, training, and development processes a revamp, get in touch with our HR experts to discuss an engagement strategy that will work for your business.