What You Need to Create an Engaging Workplace

Joe Weinlick
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An engaging workplace keeps employees motivated with a sense of belonging and purpose instead of financial incentives and awards. According to a 2016 study by The Workforce Institute, human resource professionals recognize workplace culture as an important element in driving worker engagement, and when unemployment rates drop and skilled workers are in short supply, developing an engaging culture is essential to retaining top talent. Focus on these areas to improve employee engagement.


In an employee survey by Kronos, 40 percent of workers listed work-life balance as the most important element of a great workplace culture. Flexibility is essential for creating a culture that values work-life balance. Flexible policies dealing with work hours and time off allow workers to adjust their schedules to meet outside needs; they also show the company realizes that workers have a life outside of the workplace. Flexible managers encourage worker engagement by seeing the members of their teams as unique individuals. They adjust workloads when necessary, taking strengths, weaknesses and the flow of life into consideration as well as employees' personal career goals.

Educational Opportunities

No one really wants to stagnate doing the same tasks in the same position for their entire career. Also, workers recognize that things are always changing and new skills are regularly necessary to stay up-to-date in nearly any field. Increase worker engagement by providing your staff with opportunities to learn and help them move their careers in the direction they desire. Keep top employees in mind when new positions open up before considering anyone outside of your workforce. Consider instituting a mentor program to keep employees motivated and connected to your organization. Make sure that managers are also offered career development opportunities. Seek regular feedback from workers at every level of your organization and offer them the training they need to excel at their jobs. Employees who feel competent are happier and less likely to consider leaving.


Trusting your employees helps them develop autonomy and ownership of their projects. Avoid micromanaging by letting your workers set their own pace and handle the daily details of their jobs in their own way. Keep rules minimal by ensuring every regulation is essential to safety or security. When you establish a culture of trust, employees feel valued and want to live up to that trust by becoming more responsible. When management is trusting, employees are also more likely to trust co-workers, further strengthening cooperation and worker engagement.


Use the right kind of recognition to boost worker engagement further. Employees value regular verbal affirmation from their managers. Take the time to point out good work, but be sure to also provide a kind word when things don't turn out ideally. Recognize your workers' contributions in front of your boss. Give a shout out to team successes in internal publications, and share information about projects in progress, emphasizing innovation and creativity.

Creating an engaging workplace requires getting your employees invested in your company and helping your employees with their own personal goals. Start improving worker engagement by keeping policies flexible and rules minimal, and trusting your employees to handle their own workflows. Then improve your educational offerings and start providing personal recognition to boost morale and create a positive culture where everyone's contribution has value.

Photo courtesy of franky242 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


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