21 Contemporary Employee Engagement Tools and Concepts

I recently wrote a post that was very popular on 19 antiquated employee engagement tools and concepts.

It is always easier to attack, criticize, or rip apart than to offer suggestions and useful tools. So this post offers 21 contemporary employee engagement tools and concepts than can make a difference in employee engagement in 2013 and beyond.

The image below is the pyramid model of employee engagement (Click on the image to download a document outlining a model demonstrating that employee engagement is never more than 10 blocks away).

the Pyramid Model of Employee Engagement Square

Contemporary approaches to employee engagement:

  1. Viewing employee engagement as a rich experience and opportunity that will benefit the employee, organization, management, leadership, customer, and society.
  2. Starting all employee engagement work by thinking about what needs to stop or end so that there is capacity and energy for engagement.
  3. Ensuring that engagement definitions and measure are inextricably woven into performance and results.
  4. Extending employee engagement invitations and “letting” employee engagement occur.
  5. Determining the smallest most significant thing we can do to enhance engagement and then building in structures to ensure it happens again and again and again…
  6. Co-creating our surveys with employees (yes, ask employees what questions should be asked on the survey) and offering real time feedback with the courage to face the challenges and the joy to celebrate the wins.
  7. Not holding, but rather acknowledging, that we are all responsible for engagement at a certain level.
  8. Using current social media tools to craft strategy and ensure everyone is on the same page by letting everyone write on that page. I love the line from positive deviancy, “never do anything about me without me.” This statements is especially true for all engagement work and actions.
  9. Amplifying employee voice so that we can be heard by all and working together to respond to what we hear.
  10. Using any signs of disengagement as a trigger for a meaningful conversation with the person who is disengaged.
  11. Ensuring that engagement enriches the wellbeing and energy of the employee both inside and outside of work.
  12. Recognize that engagement and effort is always under the discretion of the employee and working together to enhance their inherent discretion for work.
  13. Ensuring senior leadership knows they are employees too, and working with them to keep them fully engaged.
  14. Ensuring employees have their own dashboard of engagement which keeps them updated daily or even hourly.
  15. People are very engaged with their smart phones so ensure we use smart phones as a primary tool for engagement information, measurement, and intervention.
  16. Refusing to treat employee engagement work as a fad or bandwagon and integrating engagement so tightly into work, management, and leadership that we seldom feel the need to use the term employee engagement anymore.
  17. Making the workplace so safe that no one hesitates to sign their name to their work or their engagement measure. We don’t foster engagement with anonymous approaches and survey invisibility cloaks.
  18. Treating all performance variance conversations and interventions as engagement work rather than as another number, tick box, form, or something to avoid.
  19. Ensuring that we maximize the amount of autonomy and freedom within work and that we encourage employees strengths to come to the surface, to shine, and to make our organization stronger.
  20. Structuring work so that at the end of the day employees report that overall work is an energy gain for them not a constant energy drain.
  21. Measure less, engage more, and enthrall often.

Engage along with me, the best is yet to be.

speaking of experts2

David Zinger is an expert  global employee engagement speaker and consultant who uses the  pyramid of employee engagement to help leaders, managers, and organizations increase engagement.


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