14 Ways to Engage Your Staff

You do your best work when you’re interested, focused, and feel as if the outcome of your work matters.  Why should your staff be any different?

In the coming year, keep your staff engaged in order to help them do their best work – and build a company culture you can all be proud of.  Here are fourteen ways to do just that:

  1. Encourage your people to speak up. From sharing creative ideas to pointing out an early snag, your people are your best source of information – but only if they feel confident in sharing it.
  2. Give your people the work they want to do. Ask your team what tasks they feel most comfortable performing. Ask what tasks they enjoy.  Then, maximize the number of these tasks on each person’s plate.
  3. Encourage pet projects. Give your staff time to work on a “pet project” they think will benefit the company – no matter how pedantic (reorganizing the filing) or far-flung (inventing a new mousetrap) it may seem. The best ideas come when our brains are engaged in creative work.
  4. Foster personal and professional relationships. Whether you take the team out for happy hour or simply spend an extra hour on Friday chatting over lunch, helping people know each other on a personal level is essential for building engagement.
  5. Encourage collaboration. Collaboration saves time, improves ideas, and helps people engage by helping them build solid relationships. Encourage collaboration whenever you can, but don’t force it.
  6. Reward (truly) good work. Remember participation trophies? They were meant to make kids feel good, but instead they were mostly embarrassing.  Reward your staff only when they do well, and they’ll want to do well more often – instead of being vaguely embarrassed for being rewarded for a job half done.
  7. Credit where credit is due. Everyone wants credit for the hard work they put in, so stay alert. Note who does what, and make sure they get the praise they earned.
  8. Clarify each person’s goals and responsibilities. It’s easy to get disengaged when you don’t see the point of a job. Make sure everyone knows what to do and why.
  9. Give them space. Once goals and responsibilities are clear, put your people in charge of deciding how the job will get done. Step in only when they have questions.  This creates a sense of ownership that boosts engagement.
  10. See an employee who’s struggling to stay engaged? Step in.  Ask questions, give guidance, and take the time to really listen to their problems.  A bit of mentoring can do a world of good.
  11. Help them learn. Find ways to help your people learn new skills and expand their opportunities, whether that’s seminars, lunchtime talks, or funding tuition.
  12. Encourage wellness. Are you making it possible for your people to sleep regularly, eat on schedule, and get some movement every day? Do they have time and space to pursue hobbies or spend time with family?  Wellness is essential to engagement.
  13. Focus on attitude and behavior when hiring. Many people have the right skills to do the job, but the candidates whose enthusiasm and love of learning shines through are the ones who will help boost engagement across the board. Your staffing partner can help you focus on finding these candidates.
  14. Make onboarding a priority. The more help you give new employees at learning the ropes, the more they will feel as if they belong – and the more engaged they’ll be as a result. Your recruiter can help you perfect your onboarding process.

At THE RIGHT STAFF, LLC, our experienced recruiters can help you find the people you need to thrive in the coming year.  If you’re looking for candidates in Minneapolis or anywhere in the Twin Cities, contact us today.

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