Did you know that effective communication can be a powerful tool for enhancing employee engagement? Studies have shown that effective communication from leaders helps employees understand their roles and feel more connected to the organization’s goals. More important, effective communication with a direct supervisor is one of the strongest predictors of employee work satisfaction.
In my own experience, I know I am more engaged when I feel like my voice is being heard. I can support a decision, even if it wasn’t my first choice, if I think my opinion was taken into consideration and I understand how my actions will help the organization succeed. As a leader, I’ve found the same thing is true for those I work with.
Kevin Sheridan, CEO of HR Solutions, Inc. reported on a recent survey in which his organization found that “when managers establish a culture of open and honest dialogue among their team members, the percentage of actively engaged individuals actually rises.” Here are some tips he shared in a recent blog describing practical ways leaders can use their communication skills to support employee engagement.
1. Encourage regular two-way communication.
- Make yourself available to employees, and use active listening skills to promote dialogue.
- Encourage employees to ask questions and take the time to clarify what they may not understand.
- Use meetings and check-ins to support a regular flow of information.
2. Communicate honestly.
- Hold yourself accountable to a high standard of honesty.
- Don’t make promises you can’t keep.
- When unforeseen circumstances prevent you from following through as intended, let employees know as soon as possible and present an alternative solution.
3. Clearly convey mission and strategy.
- Explain the organization’s mission and your leadership strategy for achieving it; make it more than a poster in the photocopy room.
- Help employees build an emotional connection to the workplace by knowing how they fit into the organization’s mission and strategy.
- Make sure employees know that you value their contributions.
What can you do during the next month to help increase employee engagement?
Dee Anne Bonebright