How does employee connection look in your workplace?
Today, with the increase in hybrid and remote work, it’s even more essential that workers feel connected to their workplace. When an authentic employee connection happens, it’s shown to boost both creativity and productivity. In fact, engaged employees are estimated to be 17% more productive than their peers.
It's important to keep work relationships light-hearted and fun but also serious enough to keep work flowing. Does your workplace do that well? If there’s room for improvement, focusing on employee connectedness is one area to start in.
Below you’ll learn why employee connection matters, what it looks like, and how it benefits workplaces.
What is Employee Connection?
When you work where most everyone gets along and there’s a general sense of teamwork, joy and happiness tend to be the adjectives that come to mind. The most successful businesses have workers in place who feel connected to one another and their company.
A positive employee connection means:
- People are connected - There’s a sense that employees, managers, and C-suite leadership are all on the same page and on the same team.
- Values are aligned - When there’s a majority belief that the company matters and is making a positive difference, it shows. Workers will feel aligned with the values, too.
- Duties matter - Workers who positively tackle their role duties with gusto and feel a responsibility to do so increase satisfaction rates and their professional purpose.
Workers who feel connected in these three areas are more likely to thrive and feel happier when at work. Share your company’s vision regularly. If the work is aligned with the values of your company and team, leadership will notice a difference in employee connectivity.
Benefits of Employee Connection
Connecting with other humans — especially our work peers — is essential to the happiness and well-being of workers and the workplace. In a post-Covid world, we have fewer opportunities for valuable work connections due to remote work and global company experiences.
Here’s a look at the benefits of connected workers:
- Greater profitability - Companies with highly engaged and active teams do better overall. When workers have clear expectations and are given the proper tools, they tend to have impressive results. Engaged workers do their jobs with passion, integrity, and energy.
- Retain the best workers - Disengaged employees are no good for companies or the economy. A Gallup poll found that disengaged workers cost companies between $450 to $500 billion in the United States alone. Once a worker is lost, it costs time and money to find talent all over again — Workest reported that 63.3% of businesses claim it’s harder to retain than hire talent.
- Sense of belonging - Workers who are involved in their careers and enjoy their work tend to have a strong sense of belonging in their company. These workers also are the most loyal and dependable as they aim to do their best work.
- Creative solutions abound - Employees who feel respected and connected to their company are more willing to share their ideas. This in turn allows for more collaboration efforts and creativity to flow between departments and throughout the company.
To compete in today’s business arena, it’s a must to keep workers happy. They have many other options and choices when it comes to finding work situations that work for them.
Ways to Help Your Employees Connect
If you want to connect with your team, being strategic and consistent is key. Employee connection has an impact on everything from productivity to loyalty, so investing time in ensuring your workers feel they belong is paramount to your company’s success.
Want to truly connect with your employees? Here’s how:
- Have transparent conversations - It’s a fine line between being transparent and oversharing. Sharing company visions, leadership changes, and other big news in a composed and tactful manner is appreciated by most employees. When leadership regularly is transparent, it can reduce employee anxiety and increase motivation.
- Encourage them to use social media - If your employees are on social media — whether it’s Facebook or LinkedIn — encourage them to follow your company. That way they won’t miss photos, company updates, and exciting news that comes through the social channels.
- Schedule useful regular meetings - Effective meetings show employees you respect their time. Thoughtfully select those in attendance and ensure that there’s a specific purpose that will offer a tangible result by the end. Hate sitting in a conference room? Walking meetings are a great way to ensure your team gets exercise and is productive at the same time.
- Celebrate achievements - Big or small, achievements and milestones are worth celebrating. Bring your team together for birthdays, work anniversaries, and for exceeding project goals. Doing so on a frequent basis builds camaraderie easily.
- Practice active listening - As leaders, it’s important to set an example for the workplace. One way to earn respect and trust is when management actively listens. That means putting the phone or computer away when a colleague comes in to have a conversation. Maintain eye contact, avoid distractions, and repeat back when you are hearing to ensure you are understanding the speaker’s intention.
- Explore team-building - One way to build trust and connection? Try regular trust-building activities meant for teams. Here are 13 simple ideas for ways to connect and learn to trust each other better!
- Create team visions - A team that plans together works better together. How can your team brainstorm ways to work together in a way that’s cohesive and fun? Plan a work session to focus on quarterly team visions to ensure professional success for all.
- Add some laughter - Stress releases adrenaline and cortisol into the body which in turn can cause heart rate and blood pressure to go up. It also causes the immune system to take a hit. Laughing gives the brain a happy hormone hit that lowers inflammation in the body. Send your staff funny videos, crack jokes, and make each other laugh for stronger connections.
Give one or all of these a try. See which ones work best and keep using those techniques to help strengthen employee connections.
Get Your Team Feeling More Connected
How do you get your workers to feel more engaged and passionate? By connecting them regularly with each other, the company values, and their work, they’ll feel as though they belong and are a part of something beyond their role. Helping them feel valued, heard, and appreciated will naturally make them feel more connected to their jobs.
A few extra resources to consider:
- 52 Totally Engaging Team-Building Ideas for Every Week of the Year
- What is Social Health? A Pillar of Wellness Workers Need Now
- Why Team Building Matters (+7 Ideas to Get You Started)
Managers and leaders that make sure employees feel connected to their work, duties, and colleagues will have better success than the ones that don’t. Remember that employees aren’t simply workers for your company — first and foremost they’re people.
How do you keep your team feeling connected to each other and the company mission? Share your thoughts down below.