There is no doubt that employee engagement in the workplace is important. But recently, there has been evidence that engagement is not where businesses would like it to be. The lack of engagement can have a rippling effect that can be felt throughout the entire company. And it can often lead to additional time spent on recruitment, interviewing and hiring of new employees.
Many companies face this challenge and the hardwood lumber industry is no different. Improving employee engagement is a point of emphasis for us at American Lumber. We are committed to making sure our team is motivated, goal-oriented and recognized for all of the hard work that they do.
However, there is always room for improvement. Here are a few tips that we found useful when looking to boost employee engagement.
- Always Communicate. The best way for employees to stay engaged with their organization is by keeping them up to date on what’s going on. Management should try to share thoughts and information on strategic thinking, project plans and other important changes with their teams. As an example, we have found this to be effective in instances where we are planning on upgrading a facility with a newer kiln or t-shed or even something as small as updating the company calendars. When employees are informed and educated about the company’s direction they have a greater stake in the outcome and will be more engaged in future growth initiatives.
- Check their pulse. You hired your team members for a reason. They are intelligent, hard-working, and great at their jobs. That is why it makes sense to tap into what they are thinking. Look for opportunities to ask team members questions like these:
- How can we improve operations in your area?
- What suggestions do you have to improve the customer experience?
- What obstacles do you encounter that hamper productivity?
A great way to get a real-time feedback from your employees is by conducting pulse surveys frequently. Typically, these surveys are short, and topic specific. With only a handful of questions focused on an area or process that you want to improve.
- Communicate career opportunities. Employees that are stuck in the same position at a company with the same responsibilities will eventually become disengaged. It is imperative that you take the opportunity to give your employees new tasks and ways to contribute to the team. If the situation is right, promote from within- and share these stories within the company. Employers who recognize the hard work and contributions of their team members build an employee base that is invested in a company’s long-term success.
- Highlight achievements. When businesses recognize individual and organization successes, they generate an excitement and energy among the workforce and a sense of pride in accomplishment.
We try to encourage these characteristics with all the leaders in our facilities. Whether it be at one of our sawmills, in a lumber concentration yard, or in our administrative offices. We think it helps.
At American Lumber, we make a focused effort on encouraging these characteristics with the leaders in our facilities. Whether it is at our sawmill, lumber concentration yard, or our administrative office, we have found that it is well worth the effort to boost employee engagement.
What tips do you have to better engage your employees? Let us know!