New York — Oct. 26
Emotionally engaged employees are more likely to recommend an employer’s products, support outreach efforts to the community and buy stock in the company, according to a new study from The Brand Union, a brand strategy and design consultancy.
A survey of 680 U.S. professionals conducted recently revealed emotional engagement outweighs other forms of employee interaction, offering critical insights for executives who want to improve employee relations and business efficiencies.
“Our findings demonstrate the importance of companies implementing programs that don’t just reward but further connect employees to their brand,” said Toby Southgate, managing director for The Brand Union. “In order to connect emotionally, employees need consistent and compelling brand experiences that help formulate a clear understanding of what the brand represents.”
The study concludes that emotional engagement drives job satisfaction, having a greater impact than intellectual understanding alone of a company’s brand or financial benefits such as monetary compensation. These findings imply that employee brand engagement tactics that create dialogue, interaction and provide direction are more powerful and economically efficient in developing brand behavior for organizations.
Furthermore, one of the most critical times to engage employees is during the first six to 12 months of employment. According to the study, this period represents the lowest engagement period in the relationship between employees and their employer.
Proven strategies to increase engagement throughout an employee’s tenure include:
• Create an understanding of how an employee’s work impacts the brand and business strategy through tailored brand workshops and storytelling campaigns per functional areas.
• Foster open sharing of information, from leadership and across departments by holding town halls and cross-functional workshops.
• Be clear about opportunities for advancement, providing clarity and transparency through talent mapping and regular reviews.
• Ensure tactics such as regular reviews, brand training sessions and an active intranet are active beyond the honeymoon stage.
“For ultimate success, executives must be sensitive to the fact that one size does not fit all with brand engagement programs,” Southgate said. “Successful outcomes depend on understanding your team and how best to entreat and engage them.”
Before implementing a corporate engagement program, companies should discuss and evaluate employee understanding of the brand as well as commitment and needs per areas related to function and region.
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