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Employee Engagement – What's a Manager to Do? (Part 2)

| February 24, 2015

by Jim Bruce

The past two Tuesday Readings have focused on employee engagement, first, on February 10, 2015, focusing on what employee engagement is and then on February 17, turning to a set of five expectations that employees have of their supervisors.  The data shows that if these expectations are met, engagement will increase.  And, that’s a good thing.   

These expectations from last week translate into some specific actions for the supervisor – setting clear expectations for the job, transparent communication with the employee and the team, regular meetings with the employee, feedback, etc.  The literature also suggests some additional things that the direct supervisor can do to increase the level of engagement of his or her team.  Here are six that caught my eye:

  • Build a good team with a positive team climate and healthy relationships – clear goals and processes, standards that set a high mark, task ownership and accountability, a willingness to hear what others have to say, and encouraging new ideas and suggestions.
  • Show employees that they are valued, give them a sense of empowerment.
  • Be perceptive – able to understand the issues their direct reports are dealing with.
  • Openly communicate both the good and the bad – be approachable, candid, easy to talk with, available.
  • Project a calm demeanor – not prone to excitability, cool under stress.
  • Be generally concerned about each direct report’s well-being, be a person of integrity who cares about employees and can be trusted to keep their word.  

I encourage you to think through the list from last week along with this one and identify areas where doing some additional work on your skills and on how you engage with your team would be helpful.  Once you’ve done this, you might want to take the first one or two and begin this week.
.  .  .  .     jim
1.    Forum, “How Great Leaders Drive Results Through Employee Engagement.” 
2.    Dale Carnegie Training, “What Drives Employee Engagement, and Why it Matters.”  (Registration at the site required.)  
3.    Victor Lipman, “Why Are So Many Employees