3 Ways To Improve Employee Engagement

3 Ways to Improve Employee Engagement

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It’s no secret that employee engagement is critical for retention and recruitment. And research has made it clear that it’s no easy achievement to create an engaging workplace, with only 15% of the employees in an average workplace falling under the category of “engaged,” or loyal, committed, and enthusiastic about their jobs. 

So how can a small to mid-sized company drive employee engagement – without spending a fortune? Here are three strategies that you can begin to implement today.

3 Ways to Improve Employee Engagement

#1) Personal Connection

As much as we try to view work as a realm of life that is outside of the personal, we humans don’t set aside our emotional nature when we enter the workplace every day. We show up to work as human as ever, meaning that our tribal brains continue to seek out connection, validation, and acceptance in the office the same way that we do in other social contexts. So how can you leverage this fact to improve employee engagement?

Start by building real, meaningful personal connections. Because wouldn’t you be more excited to show up to work every day if you were going to see people who cared about you, saw you for who you are, and whom you trusted and wanted to spend time with? Chances are you know from personal experience that this is the case.

Personal connection drives employee engagement.

There are many ways to build personal connections in the workplace. From trust-building and team-building exercises to more social activities to frequent one-on-one check-ins between managers and direct reports to having colleagues pair up more often to work collaboratively to simply creating an open, welcoming environment, you’ll certainly see engagement go up if your employees simply like and want to be around one another.

#2) Rewards and Recognition

We know that animals – humans included – are powerfully driven by rewards, and even if the idea of naming an “employee of the month” might seem old-fashioned, that doesn’t mean that recognition is any less powerful of a tool for boosting employee engagement than it once was. 

This comes back to our emotional nature. It simply feels good when somebody thanks you for hard work, recognizes your efforts, and rewards you when you succeed. And, as behavioral scientists have shown us, rewards make us want to repeat the behavior that led to the reward to begin with. That’s why reward and recognition programs are so valuable. 

There are many ways to reward your employees for their dedication, from offering professional development opportunities to public forms of recognition to monetary rewards such as bonuses. The right recognition program will vary from organization to organization, but the efficacy of rewards for improving employee engagement is universal.

#3) Focus on Wellness

For too long, we’ve associated work with stress and pressure, believing that it was normal to work oneself to the bone in the workplace only to return home desperate to relax and feel like a human again. 

Thankfully, today, the business world is beginning to understand how important employees’ wellness is, not only to their engagement and well-being, but to the success of the organization itself, as healthy employees will perform better and not experience burnout as often or strongly

So if you are going to invest in any employee benefits as a way to improve engagement in the workplace, there’s no better place to start than to create an employee wellness program. Even just establishing a wellness committee whose goal is to look after the wellness of employees and come up with wellness initiatives can be a great first step.

There is a vast variety of options when it comes to contributing to employee wellness, from subsidizing gym memberships to offering healthy food and snacks in the office to providing comprehensive, affordable healthcare. With initiatives like these, you can undeniably help improve your employees’ engagement by prioritizing their health, well-being, and happiness.

Book a demo with our team to learn more about how we can help provide a holistic wellness program for your staff!


As you can see, the main idea behind all of the above strategies is to recognize one fundamental, important truth about your employees: first and foremost, they are human beings. While it may be easy to fall into the habit of viewing employees as human “resources,” keeping their humanity top of mind will help you understand how to treat them in an uplifting and respectful manner, ultimately leading to increased engagement. 

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