Have you ever wondered who is responsible for employee engagement? The reality is, everyone is responsible for employee engagement, including you. Leaders do their part by ensuring they themselves are engaged and for creating a culture that promotes engagement. HR is responsible for partnering with leaders to help them understand and support their employees’ development needs. As an employee, you have a job as well and this includes taking co-ownership of the process.
While I have often spoken of the huge impact that leaders have on their direct report’s levels of engagement, employees need to play their role too. It is a two-way street. As an employee you need to:
- Speak up – if you are dissatisfied and unless you have an unapproachable or bully boss, you need to discuss this with them. You cannot expect your boss to read your mind. This will give them the information they need to have to help make things different.
- Take initiative – look for ways to improve processes, services or products. Don’t rely solely on others to do this.
- Come with solutions – if you see problems, don’t simply identify them. No boss enjoys listening to a litany of complaints. Bring your ideas as to how each issue could be made better.
- Educate yourself – do not rely solely on your company to provide for your professional development. If you are serious about your career, you will do your part to improve your knowledge and skill levels in your area of expertise.
- Take care of yourself – while a company may offer benefits like gym memberships, yoga classes, coaching or counseling, it remains up to you to follow through. If your company does not offer much in this way, it is still up to you to find the ways and means to ensure your overall health and wellbeing.
- Develop a life outside of work – having a rich and rewarding life outside of work is key to how much energy you have for your work. Connecting with family and friends and doing stuff in your community will help keep you happy and healthy.
- Live within your means – Really. This is connected to work. Learning to abide by a budget is an important part of your overall wellbeing and can remove untold stressors from your life. Showing up to work already stressed out won’t help you deal with the day to day pressures and challenges of your job.
If you find that in spite of doing all the above, your workplace neither appreciates or rewards your efforts, then head for the door. You’ll be much happier in the long run working in an environment where you feel the love. But know that the love is a two-way street.