Business leaders need to constantly look ahead to the future and make plans for growth. While this is an important part of any sustainable business, ensuring you stay grounded in the here and now of your company is also critical.
Too often, a barrier builds between those in the boardroom at the head of a company and the employees who work to keep the cogs turning. Ultimately, the people who work to make the day-to-day operation of your business continue are your biggest asset. As such, they have to be given as much, if not more, attention than your future plans.
In fact, not doing so can have a detrimental effect on the performance and finances of your company. That’s because employee disengagement (the state of indifference or hostility from your workforce towards your organisation, its goals and its culture) can cost your company dearly. Research carried out by Jim Harter, PhD, Chief Scientist of Workplace Management and Wellbeing at Gallup indicates that the financial wound left by the lost productivity of disengaged employees is in the region of $7 trillion USD.
The reality of disengagement
As the leader in your business, it’s easy to think your company has not fallen victim to disengagement. While you personally, could genuinely think this is the case, the reality is that there is always room for improvement.
According to Gallup, only 15% of the world’s workforce is actually engaged. That means, for the remaining 85%, it’s a case of indifference or disengagement. With this in mind, chances are that at least one team member is not fully engaged, or worse, is actively disengaged.
This disengagement is not just an intangible reality. It has a direct cost to your organisation. Instead of retreating to the drawing board to focus on your marketing strategies and financial management tactics, you may simply need to pay some attention to your employees. This should help reduce the daily losses which come as a result of disengagement.
Signs of disengagement
Knowing if your team is disengaged isn’t easy. It might not be something which is immediately visible, but close monitoring will reveal common signs, including:
- Reduced productivity
- Minimal/no interest in the company
- Low morale
- High staff turnover
- Cases of absenteeism
As these indications of disengagement suggest, this is not just a financial issue for businesses. Disengagement can have an effect on the fundamental operation of a company, including workplace morale, amount of sickness, quality of work and level of communication.
It’s not all bad news, however. If you think disengagement is present in your team, there are a few things you can do. The first one is admitting there is a problem. It is very easy to turn a blind eye, especially when the problem seems too complex to solve. Getting to the source of the issue before it has time to grow is key to successfully overcoming disengagement in your workforce.
Speak to your team and look for ways to help them feel more engaged. Show them that you truly care. Doing this can boost your teams’ engagement levels considerably.
Your team is at the heart of everything you do. Make sure that they understand their role and its importance in your business’ strategy. Show them how their part can have a significant effect on the organisation’s ability to achieve its goals and objectives.
Start a conversation with your team today and nip signs of workforce disengagement in the bud. This will help unite your company and ensures that your business stays on track.
Workforce disengagement is a very common issue facing most businesses. This infographic developed by our friends at StaffConnect will help you understand the problem and discover ways of mitigating it.