Why Positive Customer Experiences Hinge on Employee Engagement

Most business leaders will tell you that customers and their experiences are the most important part of business. They also acknowledge that employee engagement is pivotal to the success of their business. After all, employees are the ones who will help form a first impression of your brand- and if they are feeling demotivated it is likely that they will not delivery during the first interaction.

An article on the Entrepreneur website lists four ways leaders can ensure employees are primed to deliver first-rate customer experience:

  1. Shorten Feedback Loops
    It’s become the norm to only give employees feedback twice a year. However, the half-a year gap in between gives employees the impression that feedback is being provided only because leaders are being obliged to. As evidence for shortening the feedback loops, Forbes notes that 43% of highly engaged employees get feedback at least once a week, compared to 18% of employees with low engagement.
  2. Tap into Your Employees’ Customer Insights
    It is widely known that high employee engagement mutually benefits the company and its staff. This is particularly apparent by simply sitting down with employees and asking for their thoughts and ideas, based on their front-line customer experience. in doing so, they will be more appreciative of you taking the time to heat, discuss and consider what they say, while you will come away with some crucial customer insights.
  3. Adopt a Personal Approach
    There are a few ways to let your employees know that you appreciate all that they do for the business- however, it should go further than the standard note. In the digital age, everything seems to be done via email including “well dones” and “thank yous”. While any appreciative comment should be recognized, delivering it in handwritten form makes it a little more personal.
  4. Communicate Your Goals
    More than one in ten employees are disengaged at work, according to statistics. The reasons behind their disengagement at work might be more straightforward than you would think. Perhaps they feel they are not able to work to their full potential because they are not being included in essential project plans and goals.

Read the full article here.

Improving the Enagement of Millennial Employees

This year the US Census Bureau predicts Millennials will outnumber Baby Boomers and members of Generation X. With the expected changes more and more businesses are adapting their strategies and operations to meet the needs of this demographic. A recent article on business.com offered some suggestions for how business leaders can engage Millennial workers, while ensuring future success for their company.

  1. Define Responsibilities and Expectations
    Being clear about your expectations from the very beginning helps to ensure that you are giving the employer/employee relationship the best possible start. From the moment they first read the job description, candidates should be aware of what their responsibilities are. As time goes on, keeping them up to date with individual and company goals will help them understand what they should be doing and how they can help the company move forward.
  2. Promote Collaboration (Not Competition!)
    Modern workforces are more about working together and less about competing with other colleagues. An intelligence Group study found that 88% of Millennials prefer to work in an environment that’s based on collaboration rather than competition. We’re all working towards the same goal, so why not work toward those goals together, faster.
  3. Think Beyond Traditional Management
    Managers used to be like supervisors, overseeing teams and ensuring that everyone performed their roles correctly. Nowadays, younger workers want their managers to be more supportive and involved, acting much like a coach or mentor. Taking this approach makes employees feel more cares for, and makes them feel like their boss wants them to perform at their personal best. This approach can often create deeper bonds and improves performance.
  4. Be Flexible
    Flexibility is key for the Generation Y workforce. Businesses should do their best to facilitate more of a work/life balance, such as offering flexible hours and telecommuting opportunities. As well as allowing your employees to have a life outside of work, which makes them more productive in the workplace, it helps foster a trusting relationship between staff and bosses. If you respect and appreciate them (and their time), they are more likely to offer the same in return.

Read the full article here

4 Steps to Boosting Employee Engagement

One of the biggest challenges and concerns of business leaders today is engaging and retaining employees. A recent article on the Huffington Post site offered hoe to steps to ensure that staff feel more motivated at work, and feel like they want to stick around.

  1. Profit-sharing
    Employees can feel disheartened and frustrated when they see the fruits of their labor- for example, company profits- only benefitting those at the top. Profit-sharing program can provide employees with direct rewards for their hard work, and encourage them to drive the company forward. Alternatively, offer incentives in the form of even tickets, staff dinners and days off.
  2. Added Benefits
    Benefits can boost morale and productivity; while some may look good on paper, they could be a waste of money. Improving working conditions- even simple changed such as office chairs- and wellness programs will make staff feel fit and healthy for work, making them more productive in the long run. However, it is important to assess which benefits are valued most in order to make the most of available benefits.
  3. Move the Office Around
    Physical environment plays a major role in our ability to do our job well. Restrictive offices and cubicles could make some feel trapped, while others may feel more focused. It is important to have employees weight in on the physical working environment in order to boost overall productivity.
  4. Maintain an Open Door
    Engagement levels improve when staff feel they can give and receive feedback to their bosses whenever they need to. Having an open-door policy means employees can find solutions to their problems, making them more likely to stick around.

Read the full article here.


Collaborative Software Can Improve Business Operations

Technology continuously changes the way we work and modern businesses need to focus on collaboration to keep workers happy and engaged, a recent article on alphr.com explains.

As younger generations enter the workforce, employees are becoming more tech-savvy than ever and expect the tools and software they use to make their working lives easier, and their working relationships stringer. At the recent Collaboration & Communication 2015 Conference held in London, experts cited these 5 reasons why collaborative techniques are essential in modern business:

1. They shape working practices

Collaborative software helps management see how well employees deal with new ideas and tools, and receive feedback from team and individuals- helping them identify what works best for their organization.

2. They improve efficiency

As businesses brow resources can often nosedive; yet communication and collaboration become more important than ever. With effective collaboration software, businesses can do more with less, and take the strain off IT departments.

3. They boost engagement

Collaboration techniques and software are also vital for increasing employee engagement. Software such as Microsoft Office 365 helps teams feel more engaged and better able to do their jobs- without the need for continuous instruction from management.

4. They utilize company knowledge

Data is everything these days, so the more knowledge you have, the more successful your business operations will be. Collaboration technology not only helps to gather data, but also helps bring it together into a useful asset that can provide real value.

5. They appeal to younger workers

Having the right tools is important for keeping younger workers engaged. Email is no longer enough to do the job. Collaborative software and effective internal communications will ensure that younger talent doesn’t start looking elsewhere.

Read the full article here.