5 min read
Sep 08, 2020
Human Resources

Think Outside the Box With These Employee Engagement Initiative Examples

How long has it been since you gave your employee engagement strategy a refresh? Let these real-life engagement examples inspire you to get creative while bringing your current plan up to date.

Sierra RogersContent Writer

Investing in employee engagement pays off: Some estimates suggest that companies with high employee engagement are up to 22% more profitable.

Aside from giving your bottom line a boost, engaged employees are also more productive, produce higher quality work, and are more likely to stay with your business longer.

If you’d like for your team to be more engaged but need some ideas on how to accomplish that, you’re in luck: We’ve compiled a list of employee engagement initiatives that might inspire you to do things a little differently, including ways that software can help

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Have your senior leaders turn the tables

Trevor Rappleye, CEO and founder of CorporateFilming.net, says employee engagement is one of his favorite topics. He uses questions to gauge how engaged his team members are in a project. One question he asks is:

How would you do this if I wasn’t here?

Trevor Rappleye, CEO and founder of CorporateFilming.net

This type of question is a great strategy for getting your employees excited about their work. Ask for their input! It shows that you respect their opinions and helps you make crowd-pleasing decisions. Plus, knowing that their input helped shape the outcome of a project increases the level of ownership your employees feel over their work. It’s a win-win-win.

One way to gather your employees' input is through a digital suggestion box. There are many tools designed to serve this purpose, but you can also just create an email address that employees can send their ideas and feedback to. 

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Set aside resources and time for employee creativity

Earlier this year, Gartner presented strategies businesses can use to maintain employee performance and engagement during a pandemic (full content available to clients). 

One of their proposed methods is to encourage innovation from employees: “While managers and employees may understandably become more risk-averse in this uncertain environment, it’s precisely during these times of change and disruption that innovation and risk-taking become even more important for employee engagement and organizational success.”

Employees crave creativity, but it also benefits your business. Ingenuity can lead to identifying (and capitalizing on) opportunities, but many businesses fall short when it comes to facilitating creative thinking amongst their employees. 

Ruggero Loda, founder of Running Shoes Guru, helps his employees learn from one another:

I invite team members who excel at a given skill to prepare a short presentation on what makes them so good at their job. Then, I ask other team members to sit in on the presentation—and we do all of this on company time. The result is that employees feel more connected; that they learn new skills; that they feel empowered and appreciated by the attention they receive.

Ruggero Loda, founder of Running Shoes Guru

New skills inspire new ideas. Along with learning opportunities, here are some other tangible ways you can empower your employees to get creative:

  • Provide your team with resources (such as software or hardware) that help them convert ideas into reality.

  • Block off time for employees to experiment with new ideas.

  • Create a platform for your team to share their ideas and follow through on promising projects. 

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Prioritize employee happiness by having fun on the clock

Have fun… at work? Yep, that’s our advice. Fun is usually considered a distraction in the workplace, but don’t be fooled: There are major benefits to letting loose with your team from time to time.

Happy employees are less stressed, more creative and productive, and provide positive support for their coworkers. On the contrary, employees operating in an all work, no play company culture are less productive and more prone to burnout. 

Jovanna Feliz, people ops manager at Hive, understands the value of connecting with coworkers on a personal level. Her team is given a stipend to use on food and drinks for monthly virtual happy hours. So far, they’ve hosted themed game nights, as well as mixology and healthy cooking classes with the help of video conferencing software

For our Pride month bingo night we opened up our invitation to friends and family, allowing employees to bring their loved ones into the experience. These virtual gatherings help boost personal relationships amongst the team and are a great way to marry their external relationships with team relationships.

Jovanna Feliz, people ops manager at Hive

Employee engagement activities are even more important for remote teams, where remote worker isolation is a concern. Bonus: Even planning them can be fun! Ask your team what kind of activities they’d enjoy and have them vote via polling software

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Next steps: Complement your employee engagement strategy with software

An effective employee engagement strategy will use creative methods to achieve measurable results. In this article, we’ve provided real-life examples of ways you can boost engagement at your business, but to be successful, you’ll need to tailor your approach to your own workforce.

That’s where employee engagement software comes in handy. Employee engagement software can help diagnose sources of disengagement and recommend solutions based on those findings. While it varies from vendor to vendor, most platforms offer these functions:

  • Employee pulse surveys

  • Worker feedback collection

  • Performance management

  • Employee recognition

  • Analytics and reporting

If you’re ready to update your engagement strategy with the help of employee engagement software, visit our directory, where you can read reviews from real users.

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