What is Good Employee Engagement

Real-Life Examples from Organizations Around the World

Effective employee engagement refers to a workplace where employees feel deeply connected, motivated, and committed to their jobs and the organization. In these organizations, employees don't just show up for work but also invest their emotions and energies, resulting in a positive and productive work environment.

To achieve this, organizations have to implement meaningful actions that align with their strategies to motivate their staff.

What does this look like? Who’s doing what?

*Real-Life Examples of Outstanding Employee Engagement Activities, Ideas, and Initiatives

The following examples are from real organizations that are implementing meaningful actions to engage their staff. Remember, engagement initiatives should be tailored to your particular organization’s culture and needs, based on feedback received during an employee survey process.

If your HR and senior leaders are stuck and need some fresh ideas, learn from these companies that have found effective ways to motivate their people. Take what resonates with you, adapt it to your organization, and succeed.

Good Employee Engagement Characteristics and Meaningful Actions to Get There:

Dedication and Loyalty:

Engaged employees are dedicated to their organization's mission and values. They take pride in their roles and are loyal to the company's success. They talk up their organization, recommend it, and are less likely to leave.

Meaningful Actions to Improve Employee Loyalty:

  • Southwest Airlines provides all their employees and employee families with free, unlimited travel.
  • Kaiser Permanente is a healthcare organization recognized for being a military-friendly employer.
  • Nvidia Software has powerful parent-friendly policies. Generous, full-paid parental leave. Reimbursement for adoption and surrogacy expenses, IVF, and egg-freezing expenses, college savings plans, and more.

Emotional Connection:

Success depends on employees. For me, knowing and connecting with my employees is very important. – Divine Ndhlukula

Solid employee engagement is characterized by an emotional bond between employees, their peers, their supervisors, and their workplace. An employee who feels an emotional connection with their colleagues and the company is more likely to remain engaged.

Meaningful Actions Increase Your Workforce's Emotional Connection:

  • Google has embraced belongingness as a make meetings matter.
  • Zappos includes in its core values, “Build Open and Honest Relationships with Communication.” They “reveal more than they conceal”, making transparency a priority.

Opportunities for Growth:

Invest in your workers’ development. Engaged employees actively seek opportunities for personal and professional growth within the organization. They value skill development and aspire to advance in their careers.

Meaningful Actions that Support Employee Development:

  • Adobe offers its employees support for education, including reimbursing them for educational material and coursework.
  • Palo Alto Networks, a cybersecurity company, provide employees with access to funds for tuition reimbursement, conferences, and other learning opportunities.

Recognition and Appreciation:

Employees should be recognized for good work and outstanding achievements. Likewise, creating a values-based recognition program is a unique way to recognize staff whose behaviors align with your organization values.

Meaningful Recognition and Appreciation Actions:

  • HP Inc. provides employees with a Good Card, worth $50.00, for employees who clock over 10 hours of volunteer time during the quarter.
  • SalesForce has badges and honors on Slack, so peers and leaders can shout out the merits of exceptional employee behavior. (We also advocate for hand-written notes from managers and peers.)
  • Cisco demonstrates the importance of employee recognition. They put their money where their values are, designating 1% of payroll to recognition programs.
  • Southwest Airlines Gratitude (SWAG) Points. Southwest has consistently been voted one of the best places to work for over a decade. They write, “Recognition is the cornerstone of our culture.” They make it easy to do on their platform where employees can send notes of gratitude, nominate peers for awards, earning gratitude points that can be redeemed as gift cards, used for experiences, and more.

There are thousands of more examples of organizations implementing meaningful actions to engage their staff. Good employee engagement isn’t just one thing, and each organization has unique needs, challenges, and company cultures. But by learning from what’s working for other organizations, your HR and organization leaders might get inspired to implement their own solutions to engagement problems.

We’ll revisit this over the course of the year to bring you real-world examples of actions, ideas, and strategies that build employee engagement in organizations of all sizes.

*Just as organizations change and grow, so, too, will their engagement strategies and programs. At the date of writing, these strategies were in place, but they will likely change to meet each company's evolving needs.

What is Good Employee Engagement

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