An engaged workforce will give you a competitive edge against your competitors because employees will be more productive and less likely to leave. Most accounting firms and companies invest an enormous amount of time and energy into improving employee engagement, but many still fail. The key is to find the right way to support your team and encourage their success. Here is the ultimate guide to employee engagement you can use to increase productivity and longevity among your team.

Understand That Each Employee Is Different

The hardest part of keeping your team driven is the fact that each individual team member has different values. One employee might be motivated by money, while another might be motivated by work-life balance. Managers often make the mistake of lumping people together. They think women are motivated by one thing and men are motivated by another thing, for example. It is never this clear cut. Stereotyping is counter-productive. Instead, you need to practice your observational skills. You can usually tell what drives an employee by paying close attention to them. You can also ask them outright. This is the easiest and most effective way to figure out what motivate your team members.

Show Strong Leadership

Leadership is the strongest factor that determines how engaged and committed an employee is. Employees who do not like, respect, or trust their managers will almost always be less engaged. There are several things you can do to improve your leadership quality. Communication is essential. Strong leaders listen to their employees and make them feel heard. If employees feel like they have a voice, they will feel more committed to their work. Strong leaders also avoid micromanaging. Employees will be more engaged if they feel like they’re in control. Instead, provide your team with the tools and resources they need to work independently and let them have a sense of autonomy.

Training and Development

What many employees want is to learn and develop their skills. If they don’t receive consistent training, they will likely begin to feel like they’re in a rut. It is important to have employee orientation early on so that new employees don’t feel lost when they first start, but you also want to train employees whenever they have a new responsibility, or there is a new policy, procedure, or technology that they need to learn. Especially early on, training enhances the employer-employee relationship, helps the employee understand what their role in the company is, and shows them that you are committed to seeing them succeed.

Keeping employees engaged is one of the most important responsibilities you have as a leader. In addition to reducing turnover, it’s the only way to ensure that your team will maintain a high productivity level.

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