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Learning's Role in Employee Engagement
ASTD - American Society for Training and Development, June 2008, Pages: 78
Employee engagement is one of the most important corporate issues today, given its impact on both individual and corporate productivity and performance. This ASTD Research study investigates how organizations are addressing employee engagement and identifies those strategies and organizational factors most responsible for influencing employees to become more engaged. Particular emphasis was given to how learning can influence engagement.
Use this research data to determine what you can do to boost employee engagement in your organization. This study was sponsored by Dale Carnegie Training.
The ASTD–Dale Carnegie Training–i4cp Learning and Employee Engagement Study (the Study) found that employee engagement is one of the most important workplace issues of the day. Despite this finding, only a third of the workforce studied here can be characterized as highly engaged. Most of the workforce, about four in 10, is moderately engaged, while a fourth of the workforce is minimally engaged or disengaged.
Engaged employees are defined as those who are “mentally and emotionally invested in their work and in contributing to their employer’s success.” Engagement evidences itself through employees who are willing to go the extra mile, speak well of their company, and make sure that customers are satisfied.
The discrepancy between the perceived importance of engagement and the level of engagement that exists in organizations today represents an opportunity to learn more about the strategies and other organizational factors that are most responsible for influencing employees to become more engaged. The Study found four main areas to be targets for improvements that can lead to greater engagement: leadership and management, learning practices and processes, practices related to communication and values, and engagement-focused practices and processes.
Understanding Links between Engagement and Organizational Success
Engaged workers contribute to their employers in many ways, all of which support organizational effectiveness and long-term success. To identify some of the primary ways that engagement affects organizational success, the Study asked about many of the reasons typically given for seeking a more engaged workforce. The three main responses were to
- enhance customer service and help drive customer satisfaction
- improve organizational productivity
- improve the bottom line.
Additional factors identified as important reasons to seek higher levels of engagement related to talent management and included improving teamwork and morale, reducing turnover, aligning employees with strategy, attracting new employees, and building a succession pipeline.
Section I—Understanding Links Between Engagement and Organizational Success
Section II —Tackling the Measurement Challenge
Section III —Driving Engagement Through Leadership and Management Practices
Section IV —Leveraging Learning Opportunities to Optimize Engagement
Section V—Connecting Employees to the Organization Through Communication and Values
Section VI —Establishing Engagement Practices and Processes
Section VII —Overcoming Obstacles to Engagement
Appendix—Learning and Employee Engagement Study Overview
Authors and Contributors
- Dale Carnegie Training
- Carnegie Mellon University
- The Conference Board
- Mercer Human Resource Consulting
- Towers Perrin
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