With nearly 80 per cent of the UK’s GDP driven by the service sector, you would think that employees would be highly engaged and motivated. This survey however, tells a completely different story.
The survey, entitled “Employee engagement: how British business measures up” includes responses from over 2000 British employees, where they were asked a series of questions regarding their productivity and engagement levels while at work.
Engagement levels are suffering within British workplaces, with the research uncovering that only a third (36 per cent) of employees are highly engaged at work.
Employees working within the financial services sector are more engaged than the UK average, with 72 per cent of staff feeling highly motivated. The prospect of earning high bonuses is most likely the root of all their enthusiasm, with the survey revealing that 80 per cent of highly engaged staff receive some form of reward or recognition.
If your SME is full of under-motivated employees, give them more responsibility and creative licence. The survey suggests that there is a direct correlation between the amount of autonomy you give your staff, and their productivity.
‘‘For small businesses looking to improve productivity, increasing your employees’ level of engagement is a low-cost investment for big rewards,” reveals Bill Alexander, CEO at Red Letter Days for Business, the firm which commissioned the survey.
There are 3 main ways that you can tell whether you have a highly engaged employee, and two of those ways relate to their managers.
An employee who is likely to set clear goals is the main way to spot a highly engaged employee, followed by having a manager who inspires them. A highly engaged employee is also likely to have a manager who lets them get on with their job.
‘‘Don’t shy away from recognition programmes because there’s no budget; a reward can be as simple as a verbal thank-you and certificate to say well done. It’s surprising how impactful a face-to-face thank-you can be. One of the most effective things you can do as a small business is look after your staff, as they’ll then look after everything else,’’ continued Alexander.