You want your employees engaged in their work, creative and in a state of flow – absorbed in the task at hand to the extent of losing track of time. The more engaged your employees are, the more likely they are to experience flow. But engaged employees do not just walk in the door. You have to nurture them. An employee engagement survey is a good first step in measuring and improving engagement among your employees. However, employee engagement is tricky to measure. Engaged employees are distinguished by the amount of discretionary effort, above and beyond their job roles, they are willing to put into work. Unfortunately, employee surveys often end-up measuring and impacting feel-good factors that don’t encourage real discretionary effort that impacts business outcomes. You must ask employee engagement survey questions that reveal data and insights on the employee performance drivers that impact business outcomes.
What Leads to Employee Engagement?
The factors that contribute to employee satisfaction also impact employee engagement. SHRM broadly defines three engagement factors: conditions for engagement (the workplace environment and the work itself), employees’ connection with their work and colleagues’ connection with employees’ work.
An organizational culture with clear communication, transparency, where differing opinions, autonomy, accountability are encouraged facilitates engagement. When employees view their own work as important and meaningful, they are more engaged. And ofcourse, their relationships with colleagues and an understanding of how work relates to the team impacts employees’ engagement.
Engaged Employees Seek Meaningful Work
Engaged employees, who go above and beyond job requirements, find their work meaningful. Meaningfulness is personal and individual and depends less on management and more on how employees perceive their work. However, you can still create workplace policies, procedures and a culture that encourages meaningful work and employee engagement. As an organization, you should aim to create a workforce that finds meaning in at least some aspects of their job, if not all.
It’s important to focus on improving those aspects that impact engagement to drive performance for business goals. Gartner recommends three areas that drive performance and increase engagement: understanding of and connection to business goals, commitment to coworkers, and, the right fit.
The following employee engagement survey questions will help you measure and impact employee engagement and translate it into business goals. When you create your employee survey, ask some open-ended questions so you can get employee perspectives on what engagement means to them.
Some of the employee engagement survey questions you can ask are:
Does management clearly communicate the company’s strategic goals?
Employees must understand the values, mission, and goals of their organization. When your employees identify with the organization’s goals and values, they are more likely to understand how their work fits in, leading to higher engagement.
Are your job requirements clearly defined in the framework of overall organizational goals?
Employees must understand what they need to do to help the organization meet its goals. Clear communication from managers is essential here. Encourage managers to communicate how job roles align across the team and organization. Clearly define the key responsibilities and expectations related to a job role.
Do you feel valued for your contributions at work?
Employee engagement is impacted by an employee’s own opinion of their work, and what their team and managers think. Acc. to Globoworkforce survey 2017, employees who are recognized, especially for core organizational values, tend to find greater meaning in work.
Do you understand how your work relates to your team?
This employee engagement survey question assesses how well individual work is aligned with the team’s collective goals. Your employees are more likely to be engaged if they understand how their work impacts the team, especially if they feel their team relies on them.
Does your team inspire you to do your best work?
Forging meaningful relationships with colleagues is crucial for employees’ success at work. High-performing employees like to learn from others who may have strengths they don’t. They also like to teach others to help them grow. This question is a great way to assess whether your teams are collaborative and multidisciplinary.
Does your team help you complete your work?
Employees that feel supported at work tend to do better work. This question assesses how strong team relationships are, and how much team support employees get. Collaborative teams comprised of members with varied strengths and headed by supportive managers have their benefits. Employees on these teams feel more confident pitching new ideas, or taking innovative risks that can potentially benefit the organization.
Do you understand how your job contributes to the organization’s goals?
Engaged employees want to know their work is meaningful and relevant in the broader context of the organization. They should clearly understand how their work impacts the organization’s goals. They are more likely to tailor their work in ways that increase productivity and innovation when they have a clear understanding of job expectations and responsibilities.
Do you have the right information to make correct decisions about your work?
Engaged employees are also accountable. This question will help you understand whether your employees feel they have enough information to be confident in their decisions. You can use this feedback to provide employees the information, resources, and support they need.
Do your team members and manager provide help and resources when a problem arises?
This employee survey question assesses whether your employees have the support and resources they need to confidently navigate changes when they occur and engage in problem solving.
Do you understand the informal structures and processes that exist at the organization?
Gartner recommends that this question should be part of every employee engagement survey. Every organization does have informal processes and structures. Employees who successfully navigate these also get the resources they need to do great work.
Does your manager, or anyone in management, show an interest in your career aspirations?
High-performing employees want to grow. They are more likely to continue to be invested in the organization when they are confident that the organization is invested in them.
Do you feel challenged within your job role in a way that results in personal growth?
When employees successfully complete challenging tasks, they experience a sense of fulfillment from their work. Challenges that result in a growth in skills also increase engagement, especially among high-performing employees.
Do you have autonomy to make decisions, set timelines and create goals within your job role?
Engaged employees are proactive, innovative and creative. When given freedom and flexibility, your employees will reduce unnecessary and unproductive work, and find work both meaningful and engaging. But research from MIT found poor management drastically reduces meaningfulness. Avoid micromanaging your high-performing employees. You must create an environment where employees get the flexibility and independence to play to their strengths.
How likely are you to recommend us as a great place to work to your friends and family?
The employee Net Promoter Score® (eNPS®) question is the ultimate question to assess employee loyalty. Use your eNPS to benchmark and track trends in loyalty. Implement changes that help you create a stronger culture of loyalty and trust.
Analyze the results of your employee engagement survey to assess levels of engagement. Identify areas where you need to make improvements. And don’t forget to track engagement continuously. Use Zonka’s feedback management software to analyze the results. You’ll be able to create trends and measure improvement over time. Increase employee engagement in a way that positively impacts business outcomes.
Don’t forget to check out the questions to ask in an employee satisfaction survey.