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Employee Engagement Ideas For Small Companies



Starting a business is normally no easy feat. If you have your own small business, you’ve probably put in your own blood, sweat and tears to get it off the ground. This is exactly why it’s so important to ensure that it continues to run successfully.


One of the main elements of business success is employee engagement. Engaging employees will encourage them to generally work harder and be more productive, which usually equates to high revenue and increased success.


In an ideal world, your employees would work as hard at their jobs, as you worked on your own business. This guide provides 12 tips to help engage your employees, increase employee engagement and ensure that your business thrives as a result.


Put on a company culture and company values day

There’s a huge difference between an employee who just shows up to clock on to their shift and counts the minutes until they can clock out again without really caring about the job and an employee who is fully invested in their role. In order for a staff member to give it their all, it’s important for an employee to know what the company stands for, which is otherwise known as company culture.


A great way to teach your staff about company culture and the company's mission is to organize a values day. This social activity can consist of setting goals as a team, voting on aspects that have to do with the staff as a whole and brainstorming ideas as a unit.


When an event like this is undertaken, it shows workers that their opinion is respected and conveys what the company expects from the employees. It also helps to engage employees and encourage them to work together as a team and assist each other when they can.


Be a mentor: Help your employees set and achieve individual goals

As a leader or manager, it’s important to take the role seriously and strive to be more than just a “boss” in the textbook sense. One of the best ways to get through to an employee is to lead by example and to act as a mentor.


This can be done by doing tasks the way you want things done so that your team can understand what is expected of them. A good way to do this is by talking with your staff and setting goals with them. While doing this, you can understand what tools they need to achieve their goals. This will show your employees that you really care and it should encourage them to try harder as well. An engaged employee has a much higher productivity rate than those who aren't.


Start a company bulletin

Starting a company bulletin is a great way to engage your staff. Doing this provides a medium to inform your team about what is going on at the company, which helps to make them feel respected and included instead of feeling like just another employee.

An example of this would be if your team just had a record-breaking month of work. You can use the bulletin to let them know about their great work and express your gratitude. This can also work the opposite way, if things are unsatisfactory, the team can be informed about what is expected via the bulletin.


A company bulletin is also a great way to share highlighted or educational reading that can improve your staff's skills.


Lastly, a company bulletin doesn’t have to be just work-related information, it can also have a personal touch, which can help boost morale or employee engagement. For example, if an employee recently has a child, a congratulatory message can be included.

Using a bulletin in this way can keep employees engaged by making staff members feel as if they are a part of each other's lives. This can help to decrease staff turnover and make staff feel included and appreciated.


Anticipate salary needs to avoid high staff turnover

It’s imperative to compensate employees for their great work. When an employee works hard and they feel as though their effort isn't appreciated, employees can run the chance of losing them - or seeing a drop in productivity.


A great way to engage a staff member is to anticipate a staff member's salary needs and let them know if, when and how they can expect raise due to their hard work. To understand their remuneration expectations, you can use an employee feedback survey.

This method can help to avoid a large amount of staff turnover because employees will feel as though their hard work is paying off and that their management respects that enough to reward their work financially. This should also help with promoting employee engagement.



Set up fun employee engagement activities

Running a successful business involves a lot of hard work and, often, stressful situations. When employees are constantly stressed or overworked, their employee engagement is almost guaranteed to decline.


Setting up some fun employee engagement activities for workers to destress, enjoy and bond with co-workers is a great way to keep positive morale around the workplace. After all, engaged employees work harder and stay longer with a company.


Examples of how to do this include setting up a holiday party for the staff (like a Christmas party) or organizing a company sporting event to attend for employees to attend if they achieve impressive results. By doing this, staff members will have more of an opportunity to bond with their colleagues, which in turn will turn I can help to provide a happier working environment which will help with engagement.


Build and reward loyalty to keep employees engaged

The importance of loyalty within a business should never be discounted. Having loyal staff members will not only make mange management’s life easier because they have a team they can trust, but it also shows that they are dedicated employees who will likely be proud of their role and the business and subsequently work hard.


Loyalty within a business can be built by having management show their staff members that they are respected through listening to their opinions and grievances and making changes in an effort to boss their happiness.


It’s also important to be fully transparent with staff. This will show them that management is trustworthy and will build trust in them in response. To encourage loyalty within a workplace employees should be rewarded when they show it. For example, a reward could be lunch provided by the company or allowing workers to have a paid afternoon off work.


Loosen up on a Friday afternoon

Almost anyone who’s worked for a long period of time in a Monday - Friday office job can relate to the “Friday” feeling. After all, how common are ‘Happy Friday’ mentions in emails sent on that day?


Employees often come to work on Friday invigorated and happy because they know they have a weekend of relaxation (or partying!) ahead of them. A company can adopt a relaxed Friday afternoon strategy in an effort to thank workers for their hard work all week.


A few ways to do this would be to make offer an extended lunch break, afternoon drinks or allow staff to dress more casually on Fridays. This should help to make employees feel valued.


Don't underestimate a good onboarding process

The age-old sentiment says first impressions counts. And this rings true when it comes to employment. If an employee is given a thorough and positive onboarding process, they should enter the workforce in a positive frame of mind.


When going through the training process let the new employee, management should let them know expected what’s expected of them in a friendly way. Great managers will be able to communicate the job role and expectations to new employees while still making them feeling excited and happy about the role they are entering.


Know your employees

No two employees are the same, and this is particularly evident when running a small company. For this reason, it’s important to know each of your employees individually so that you can cater to their particular needs and ensure that they are fulfilled.


For example, perhaps one staff member works best when they are just left to do their things on their own, whereas another employee might thrive with most supervision and positive reinforcement. A good leader should be able to recognize this and identify what each employee needs in order to thrive.


Conduct a survey to see whether employees feel engaged

Conducting a survey is one of the clearest ways to find out whether or not employees feel engaged. By doing this, you can ask direct questions as to if something benefits their engagement in the work environment. With this knowledge, you can plan accordingly to see what needs to be changed.


Recognise your staff and reward their hard work

Most employees will agree that when their hard work is recognised and rewarded, they feel valued and respected. On the other hand, when an employee's great work is ignored, it can feel demoralizing and cause them to wonder why they bother working so hard - which leads to lower engagement.


In order to avoid the latter scenario, leaders should stay vigilant about the amount of effort and hard work employees are putting in. If they notice an employee is doing a great job, they should either vocalise this or physically show their appreciation by rewarding the employee (eg a bonus, gift voucher or free lunch). This will help boos staff morale, as well as encourage professional development.


Celebrate birthdays and provide surprise treats

In an ideal work, employees would show up to work hard every day. However, to achieve this leaders should strive to add a personalised element to the work environment. An example of this is to celebrate an employee's birthday by providing treats or a cake. Though it’s a small gesture, it shows that the company cares about them, which can lead to increased employee engagement. This is an example of striking a good work-life balance and can help to boost job satisfaction.


Some final thoughts on building employee engagement ideas for small companies

Having engaged staff is a very effective way to achieve maximum productivity from your staff while lowering turnover rates at the same time. You can do this by creating a strong employee engagement program. Practising the above points is a great start toward increasing engagement and helping to make your business thrive.

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