Communication is a hallmark of any healthy relationship. A recent study from Gallup, ‘State of the American Manager,’ found that consistent communication is strongly connected to higher engagement. Employees whose managers hold regular meetings with them are almost three times as likely to be engaged as employees whose managers do not hold regular meetings with them.
The frequency of meetings is less important to employees than the fact that they happen at all. The Gallup study also found that engagement is highest among employees who have some form (face-to-face, phone or electronic) of daily communication with their manager. And while all forms of communication are effective, managers who use a combination of face-to-face, phone and electronic communication are the most successful at engaging employees.
Employees value communication from their manager not just about their role and responsibilities, but also about what happens in their life outside of work. The Gallup study revealed that employees who feel as though their manager is invested in them as people are more likely to be engaged.
Approachability is a key attribute of a good manager. Employees who feel that they can talk with their manager about non-work-related issues are much more likely to be engaged.
2. PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT BEYOND ANNUAL REVIEWS
Performance management is often a source of great frustration for employees and managers alike. Employees often do not clearly understand their goals or what is expected of them at work. They feel uncertainty about their duties and disconnected from the bigger picture. For these employees, annual reviews and developmental conversations frequently feel forced and superficial. It is difficult for them to think about next year’s goals when they are not even sure what tomorrow will throw at them.
Yet, when performance management is done well, employees become more productive, profitable and creative contributors. The same Gallup study found that employees whose managers excel at performance management activities are more engaged than employees whose managers struggle with these same tasks. Finally, when managers help their employees set work priorities and performance goals they are much more likely to be engaged.
Not sure where to start with performance management or have a specific question? Contact our Advice & Resolution team today!
Tom Sheehan brings 20+ years of extensive, broad based strategic, tactical and practical HR experience to CAI’s Advice & Resolution team. He advises HR and other business leaders on talent management, organizational effectiveness, employee engagement, M&A’s, and employee relations.