It’s a simple concept: when we are able to throw our hearts, spirits, minds, and hands into the work we do, we produce better results. We are happier, healthier individuals, and more successful organizations. So, why are some organizations engaging, while others aren’t?
Through our research of over 14 million employee survey responses across 70 countries, we found some surprising results. Bottom line? It’s… well… MAGIC!
It’s not foosball tables in the breakroom. It isn’t pet care, free haircuts, and free food. It’s not even lucrative employee stock programs. Although those things are pretty cool (who wouldn’t love Taco Tuesdays?), and are often the “price of admission” (if the basics aren’t there, employees certainly won’t be satisfied), they don’t create engagement.
Employee Engagement isn’t something that you buy with perks. Rather, it’s a two-way process where the organization creates the environment that allows engagement to foster and employees choose to engage. While that environment looks different to each of us, there are some clear commonalities that create a culture in which we choose to engage.
As we poured through the data, searching for common concepts that were related to both overall engagement and team performance, five themes became very clear. They’re M-A-G-I-C:
Meaning – Your work has purpose beyond the job itself.
Autonomy – The power to shape your work and environment in ways that allow you to perform at your best.
Growth – Being stretched and challenged in ways that result in personal and professional progress.
Impact – Seeing positive, effective, and worthwhile outcomes and results from your work.
Connection – The sense of belonging to something beyond yourself.
When these elements are present, organizations and employees tend to be significantly more engaged. In fact, when looking at those organizations scoring highest in these five keys, the top quartile had overall engagement scores that were 74% higher than those in the lowest quartile.
So next time you try to solve your engagement woes by adding a soda fountain to your breakroom, ask yourself how carbonated sugar addresses one of the five keys of engagement. You might save some employees (and teeth) in the process.