Employee Engagement: Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Actions speak louder than words when it comes to employee engagement.

Employee Engagement: Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Have you ever found yourself working in an organization that failed to understand the importance of taking actions to improve worker performance? “Actions speak louder than words.” However, many organizations either don’t know how to implement employee interventions or fail to do so.

As HR professionals, we are in a position that can help move the needle. We can be advocates for both the employee and the employer to help support growth and performance. Gone are the days where organizations believe everyone is replaceable. We have entered a time where employees are difficult to recruit, and we must determine best practices on how to retain our talent. 

Why you should take action on employee engagement

Employee engagement (EE) is a term that often bounces around the hallways of our organizations. But how well do our leaders truly understand this concept? Even fewer understand what actions can be taken to improve EE. But as HR professionals, we know that EE will impact “productivity, profitability, customer loyalty, and safety”(Mehrzi and Singh, 2016, p. 92).

For these reasons, we strive to unleash our employees’ full potential. Meanwhile what we tend to work through is that our organizations most often fail to initiate the time and talent required to impact EE.   
To review, EE is “a positive, fulfilling, and work-related state of mind that is characterized by vigor, dedication, and absorption” (Schaufeli et al., 2002, p. 465) or others may look at EE as a “positive, active, work-related psychological state operationalized by the maintenance, intensity, and direction of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral energy” (Shuck et al., 2017, p. 269).

More simply put, when organizations witness a higher level of employee engagement, they will also see a higher number of employees working towards the mission, vision, and key performance indicators (KPIs) of the organization. Naturally, this leads to higher employee levels of the three Ps: passion, productivity, and performance (Hurtienne & Hurtienne, 2021). 

What are some steps that you can take today to help improve EE?

  • Develop and initiate a succession planning program.
  • Help to show your employees they have a strong future with your organization and how they can achieve success. 
  • Implement  a leadership academy that includes tenants of how leaders can lead your workforce. 
  • Develop hiring practices that match your organizational preferred culture and expectations.
  • Allow all voices to be heard in organizational performance.
  • Establish practices that ensure work-life balance.  

Do you want to know more?

Dr. Matt Hurtienne is the Associate Dean at the Batterman School of Business and Haab School of Business at Concordia University Wisconsin & Ann Arbor. Also, he serves as the Director of the Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) program and is Associate Professor of Business.

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