While a positive morale throughout the workplace is always a welcomed result of happy employees, CEOs and company heads know that there’s more to it than just that. Genuine employee satisfaction reverberates throughout many aspects of the company, effecting productivity, retention and overall success. Having an authentic pulse on the contentment of your team members can help you to adjust areas that need improvement, as well as act as a parameter for future endeavors.
Many companies are utilizing the social tools available to them across the Internet to properly fine-tune their employee satisfaction. Charles Lilly, Program Manager for HUB International, indicates that resources such as social media and online job posting sites help to understand the morale, perspectives and satisfaction from their employees’ viewpoints. “By using sites such as LinkedIn and Glassdoor, we are able to view these social platforms and read what our employees are saying,” says Lilly.
Lilly also points to anonymous surveys as a way to measure their employee satisfaction at HUB, “We have internal surveys that our Learning Development Team creates the questions to and then a third party administers the tests and delivers the results.” What they do with the results makes a difference too. “Once we have the results, we bring in the people from HR and walk through the results together. Working through what people are saying and feeling, we can make an action plan to fix the areas that aren’t successful,” Lilly explains. By being able to anonymously address issues in the workplace ,without fear of retaliation or consequence, these surveys are often the most eye-opening forms of evaluating employee satisfaction.
Social Media and surveys aren’t the only ways HUB International is evaluating their employee satisfaction, however. They understand the benefits of face-to-face interactions, and the importance of one-on-one conversations with the employees working inside the business day in and day out. While the benefits of anonymity are removed, the informal nature of the conversations allow team members an opportunity to open up with a manager and express their likes or dislikes without the stress of a formal evaluation.
When done correctly, roundtable discussions with team members and managers are incredibly effective at getting to the heart of issues- and forming solutions. However, there must be guidelines in place for meetings like this to ensure that an angry “town hall” mentality doesn’t ensue- breaking down the lines of communication and deteriorating the morale of the employees. The purpose here is to build trust within the organization and building the image of a company that truly values what their employees have to say.
While we certainly understand the importance of an exit interview, we must ask: why wait until then to ask the important questions? Instead, take a proactive approach and meet with your employees on a monthly or quarterly basis in some fashion, to gain insights to their needs and happiness. This allows employers to be continuously touching base with their employees and the culture they are trying to create.