Employee Engagement Declines with Tenure
Unfortunately decreased engagement for tenured employees is the norm. Our latest employee engagement trends report showed engagement tends to decline with tenure. Longer-term employees are, on average, less engaged than newer employees.
Why Newer Employees are More Engaged
A new job can be both exhausting and exhilarating. On the one hand, new employees are struggling to understand the performance expectations, working step-by-step up a daunting learning curve, and trying to start off on the right foot.
On the positive side, new employees report feeling welcomed by new colleagues, excited to meet new challenges, and thrilled to learn new skills. From an employee engagement perspective, a new job offers heightened possibilities to feel wanted, needed and appreciated — the very foundation of workplace engagement.
The Honeymoon Period
But how long does this so-called new job honeymoon last for new employees?
Far too short according to the over 500,000 employee engagement survey responses we review each and every year. In fact, for most companies the level of employee engagement falls significantly after the first year on the job regardless of industry, size, or geography.
Four Ways to Avoid Decreased Engagement for Tenured Employees
Decreased engagement for tenured employees in their second or third year is not inevitable. There are ways to keep your tenured employees fully committed to their job throughout by:
As they improve, add bit-by-bit to their responsibilities with stretch assignments and ensure that they have a clear line of sight to their value to the enterprise.
In short, expand their thinking around new ways to contribute and add welcome variety to their day-to-day routine.
The more you can take advantage of an employee’s true motivators and talents, the happier that employee will be.
Change up the way you express your appreciation — in front of the team, in the employee newsletter, with a pizza lunch in their honor, by an excused late morning arrival, or with a favored parking space.
Use your imagination and keep employee recognition specific, proportionate, and meaningful.
The Bottom Line
Do you sense that those employees you hired a year or so ago are losing motivation? Then try the tips above to keep them on target and engaged.
To learn more about how to engage and retain top talent, download The Top 10 Most Powerful Ways to Boost Employee Engagement
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