employee satisfaction Archives - Envision Excellence

How you may be sabotaging your relationship with employees

We are getting ready to remodel our kitchen, and I contacted several contractors to visit our home to discuss the project and provide an estimate. One didn’t return our initial calls, one came out and we had to follow up three times before he sent the estimate, and one called us back within a day and sent his estimate within two days of our meeting. It was not a hard to decide who to hire for the job.

Responsiveness and follow through are crucial for any business, and unfortunately many organizations fall short of making this a practice. How a person responds and follows up says a lot about an organization and their service. These actions set the tone for the relationship, or it dissolves the relationship before it has even begun.

This applies to leaders and their employees. Every interaction you have with your employees sets the tone for that relationship and either deepens the relationship or chips away at it. Unfortunately, many leaders take the relationships they have with employees for granted and don’t see the impact of the daily interactions.

Below are common examples of how leaders can damage the relationship with employees:

  • Showing up late to meetings
  • Shifting a meeting you have with an employee because another “priority” came up
  • Not providing feedback
  • Not giving an employee their performance evaluation on time
  • Not showing appreciation
  • Always being too busy to support or coach
  • Not providing clear expectations and deadlines
  • Not being prepared for a meeting you have with an employee

You have an opportunity every day to bring your best leadership to your people. How you interact with and treat your employees sets the tone for how they will treat your clients. Accountability starts with you. Do you model accountability with your employees? Do you do what you say you are going to do? I believe our employee relationships are the most important. If you put your employees first, they will in turn put your clients first. If employees feel appreciated and cared for, they will exhibit the same approach toward clients.

An exceptional leader models positive behaviors and views the relationships with his employees as one of the most important relationships to cultivate. An exceptional leader is never too busy to write a thank you note, show appreciation, meet with his employees, provide meaningful feedback, and conduct performance evaluations. An exceptional leader knows it’s his job to make employees a priority and ensure the relationship gets continued focus.

I’d love to hear what you do to cultivate the relationship with your employees. Share one thing you do to ensure your employees feel they are a priority in the comments section below.

Employee Satisfaction vs. Engagement

This year got off to a great start for me. Our family welcomed our second child, Luca, on January 18th.  We are very excited to have him join our family, and big sister Olivia is enjoying him! Here is a picture of baby Luca.

I was also honored to be interviewed for the article, “Coaching Outside the C-Suite” in the January edition of Credit Union Management magazine.

Since I am taking a few weeks off, I asked my colleague, Kerry Liberman, to share some information this month on engaging employees. Kerry is president of People Perspectives, a company that conducts employee opinion surveys, and she has a lot of insight on how to keep your employees engaged. Read below for Kerry’s advice on why you want to measure engagement in addition to satisfaction.

Employee engagement has become a hot topic in companies over the past few years. More and more often, organizations are looking at measuring engagement as a means to improving their company’s bottom line. Prior to engagement, at People Perspectives, we measured employee satisfaction exclusively. However, with the compelling research on employee engagement, we found that the best strategy was to “make room” for both satisfaction and engagement in our surveys.

Here’s why:

Employee Engagement. An engaged employee is someone who is loyal, puts forth extra effort for the company, and remains with the organization for a long period of time. What can engaged employees do for a company? For starters, compared to disengaged workers, one research firm found that engaged employees had 27% less absenteeism, 62% fewer accidents, and 31% less turnover. Moreover, employee engagement led to higher customer satisfaction and higher future spending intentions.

Employee Satisfaction. Literally thousands of studies have been conducted, looking at the impact that employee satisfaction has on the workplace. Over time, researchers have found that employee satisfaction is significantly correlated with higher innovation and production levels of staff, lower absenteeism, and higher levels of employee loyalty and retention.

Using Both. Although employee engagement findings have understandably met with great fanfare within the HR community, it (like employee satisfaction) has its limitations. Engagement doesn’t address issues such as pay, benefits, advancement opportunities, senior management, or organizational structure. On the other hand, employees may be perfectly satisfied with their jobs, but it’s not the same thing as being engaged. Even though the employee’s needs are being met and they’re happy to come to work, they may not promote the organization’s goals and ethics as engaged employees would.

Surveying employees on both their satisfaction and engagement is instrumental to getting a comprehensive view of not only how satisfied they are with different programs in place and the workplace overall, but also how committed they are to the organization. This type of assessment really provides the best of both worlds.

Kerry Liberman is the president of People Perspectives LLC, a company that specializes in conducting employee opinion surveys (including engagement and satisfaction) and internal service surveys. She can be reached at 206-451-4218 or [email protected]

Thank you, Kerry for sharing your expertise!