Disengaged employees aren’t difficult to identify. A few of the telltale signs include: an overall lack of enthusiasm for new projects, frequent complaining, stagnant growth, lack of initiative, and an unwillingness to collaborate with team members. While the negative implications on a disengaged employee’s own career are obvious, this disengagement can have a very serious impact on a company’s productivity. If you find that your employees frequently display these behaviors, it’s time to institute immediate changes in order to keep your business growing and thriving.
Fortunately, there are very easy adjustments you can make starting today to combat employee disengagement. Below are just a few of the ways you can proactively adjust your work environment to keep employees invested, dedicated, and excited about your company:
Show you Care
Taking the time to get to know staff members on a personal level is key to demonstrating their value to the company. Try to get to know the hobbies, interests, and goals of each employee. There oftentimes exists a disconnect between upper level management and their employees. However, taking the time to ask questions will bridge this gap, allowing you to build a stronger connection with your team while also gaining valuable insight into how best to motivate each member of your staff.
Employees who go above and beyond by contributing ideas on how best to increase productivity and improve efficiency should be recognized and rewarded for their initiative. By fostering an environment that welcomes and encourages such creativity, your employees will see that their opinions are truly valued. Further, staff members are likely to remain more engaged and committed to projects that they came up with and have some role in managing. If an idea doesn’t work out quite as planned, don’t be discouraged. Instead, use it as a learning experience, applying lessons learned to future projects.
Make Team Building a Priority
In order for a team to thrive, it is essential that members understand and respect one another. By learning the skills, capabilities, and synergies of co-workers, employees are better positioned to approach projects in ways that best utilizes the individual strengths of each team member. Through the use of team building activities, you’ll build a sense of community and camaraderie among a group with a singular shared goal: the success of the company. Whether held each week, month, or as part of a specialized retreat, team building has been shown to enhance enthusiasm and productivity in the workplace. The internal connections built among co-workers will leave them more satisfied with their work environment, making those dreaded Monday mornings a bit easier to bear.
Clearly Define Expectations
If an employee is unsure of their specific responsibilities in general or for a project, maintaining excitement can be a chore. When assigning tasks, make sure you give clear and direct instructions so as to avoid any confusion around the execution and/or goals of the assignment. Also take the time to explain how each project coincides with the company’s larger goals, further demonstrating the value of each staff members’ contribution to the success of the company. Let your employees know that you’re open to and encourage questions should they require more information.