Employee engagement is a proven way to raise employee morale, lower quit rates, and make your workforce more productive. Showing employees how their day to day work contributes to the bigger picture and helps the organization reach its goals leads to engagement. Conveying clear vision and providing a sense of importance is how managers can contribute to overall workforce engagement at an organizational level. Employees are the ultimate driver of an organization to its goals, so it is important to engage employees through training, professional development, and rewards ranging from useful gift cards to larger rewards such as vacation travel and extra time off.
It is sometimes difficult to tell the difference between high employee morale and true engagement. According to Ronald Sanders, a senior executive adviser and fellow at Booz Allen Hamilton, engagement entails innovation, commitment, and employees choosing to use their discretionary energy at work. Engagement goes beyond a happy workforce to a deeper level of commitment to work and understanding of the importance of the job employees do every day. It is important to reward employees who reach this level so that they not only feel the importance of their position but so they feel supported by their organization. Reinforcing desired behaviors and attitudes is crucial to maintaining the engagement cycle into the future of the organization.