5 Actions to Take After Your Employee Engagement Survey

5 Actions to Take After Your Employee Engagement Survey
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Actions to Take After Your Employee Engagement Survey

Good for you.  You surveyed your workforce to check on their level of employee engagement. But you need to realize that asking engagement survey questions is only the first step toward improving levels of employee advocacy, discretionary effort, and retention.  Now, just like after any assessment of organizational culture, you need to follow through and take action based upon the survey results.

What Happens if You Do Not Follow Through on Your Survey Results?
If you ask questions without following up, you might actually worsen the situation.   When you ask employees for feedback, you raise employees’ expectations that their opinions matter and that their work environment will improve. Ignoring the results will undermine their trust in company leadership and reduce their level of commitment to the business.

In fact, when leaders follow through on action plans that are co-created in team work groups, employee engagement increases 12 times greater compared to those companies that do not.

5 Actions to Take After Your Employee Engagement Survey
So follow-up action from leaders and managers is needed.

  1. Share the Feedback and a Timeline
    Start by thanking employees for participating and share the overall employee engagement survey results. This can be at a fairly high level at first focusing on the most favorable and unfavorable categories and high-level next steps. Work teams will drill down later as they analyze which engagement-related actions will have the most impact on your people AND your business.

    Let your workforce know that you as leaders are committed to making changes and how they fit into overall strategic and talent priorities.  Then set up a timeline and communication system that keeps employees informed of progress and be clear about how stakeholders will be actively involved going forward.

  2. Actively Discuss the Results in Teams
    Managers should hold employee engagement focus groups and meetings with their work groups to talk about team specific survey results, item by item. Include the whole team and make sure everyone has a chance to share their perspective. This demonstrates that everyone’s opinion counts — in and of itself an important part of engaging employees.
  3. Choose a Few Items to Focus On
    Which key items does the team as a whole want to address that have the highest correlation to increased levels of employee engagement? Use the survey results to identify the critical few areas with the highest correlation to engagement for your unique strategy and culture.

    Then prioritize the list and select the critical few priorities that you can work on in the next 90-days that have the greatest chance for improvement in your unique situation.  Make sure that you focus on what is in your control and on areas that are directly tied to your company’s strategic priorities.

    Do not waste your time on areas that do not make sense for your company’s strategic focus or unique organizational culture.

  4. Design Your Plan of Attack
    Using a proven brainstorming method to actively gather input on the specific steps that you can take to address the issues raised that make sense for your company’s strategy and workplace culture.

    Refine the list and then set up “owners” for each task, establish a timeline for delivery, and pick dates for key follow-up meetings.

  5. Follow Up
    Meet on a regular basis to create joint ownership and to check on progress. At this point, it’s all about employee engagement accountability. Celebrate wins and figure out ways to overcome unforeseen challenges.

The Bottom Line
Employee engagement action planning is crucial. When leaders take engagement survey results seriously and involve workers in solving the problems that come to light, employees trust the system and believe that their leaders care.  Go ahead and ask the questions as long as you are committed to taking meaningful steps toward improvement with your employees based upon what you learn.

To learn more about actions to take after your employee engagement survey, download Employee Engagement Mistakes: Are You Aimlessly Engaging Your Employees?

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