Employee Engagement

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“The evidence of a significant relationship between employee engagement and financial performance is undeniable." -Towers Perrin Talking about the engagement and commitment of an employee to an organisation, most companies are of the opinion that they do have a few, but they still want more. Why? It is merely because these companies have come to the realization of the fact that their organization’s long-term success relies on employee performance, which is directly impacted by the level of employee engagement and commitment to an organisation. Well, some organisations think that simply making people happy and paying them handsome pay packets is the solution. But it is not so. These are things which an organisation need to consider to attract and retain the most qualified individuals, however, when it comes to engaging employees in their work, there are definitely some more issues that need to be worked out. Engagement requires engaging not only the employees’ minds but their hearts as well and this is something that the organisations can neither force nor buy in order to succeed in the marketplace. What is Employee Engagement?

An engaged employee is a person who is fully involved in, and is enthusiastic about, his or her work. Such employees are attracted to, and inspired, committed and fascinated by their work. In a recent research by Hewitt Associates, it was found that engaged employees are not only intellectually committed to the organisation but are also emotionally attached to it, as is measured by 3 primary behaviours: say, stay, and strive1. The age old business dictum goes that ‘satisfied employees create satisfied customers’ by constantly striving for the best, contributing to the bottom line of the company success by their motivation and enhanced performance. It is believed that an engaged employee always acts positively in the interest of the company and takes unconcealed pride in the success and prosperity of his employer. The engaged employees and the organisations go that extra mile for each other realizing the benefits that flow through an investment in such a relationship. Does engagement really make a difference?

According to the former GE Chairman and CEO, Jack Welch, a company’s health is determined * Asstt. Professor (HR and OB), Lal Bahadur Shastri Institute of Management, Delhi. She can be reached at rachnakani@rediffmail.com 1 http://www.corporatephilosopher.com/2-BestEmployersStudybyHewitt.pdf

through it’s energized workforce who not only realize the mission of the organisation but also make strenuous efforts to achieve it. In a recent Business Week advice column, the measurement found to give the best sense of a company's health is employee engagement . The energized employees, who believe in the mission of the organisation and have an understanding of how to achieve it, help the organisation win in the long run. Engaged employees care about the future of the company and are willing to invest the discretionary effort to see that the organisation succeeds. A 1998 McKinsey & Co. study entitled, The War for Talent, reported that a shortage of skilled employees was an emerging trend and it was more so due to the fact that the organisations fail in their attempts to create a workforce that is not only cognitively vigilant but also emotionally connected to the organisation . Research has proven that wholly engaged employees tend to be more self-motivated, reliable, and have higher levels of organisational loyalty. They are capable of delivering sustained differentiation and a significant competitive advantage and give their company their 100 percent by affecting the key result areas such as employee turnover, sales, innovation and customer satisfaction. Engaged employees in customer-facing roles are more likely to treat customers in ways that positively influence customer satisfaction and are more than twice as likely to be company advocates. They share information with colleagues...
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