Many of us took those water-cooler moments in the office for granted, but remote work has made it clear that those moments were crucial in keeping everyone together. Elena Valentine, CEO of workplace media company Skill Scout and self-proclaimed “job nerd,” stresses the importance of improving employee engagement — 95% of highly engaged employees go above and beyond, and companies are 67% more likely to improve revenue with an employee engagement plan.
In her Prezi video, Elena outlines her “three Cs” to help you build employee engagement and recreate the camaraderie of in-person interactions while working remotely. Watch her full video below and read on for a summary of her tips.
Connect with your team
One of the concerns with online communication is video conference fatigue, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep people engaged. Elena suggests that even something as simple as having something in the background or adding a virtual background can tell a story and spark new conversations. Plus, nowadays there’s a holiday or hashtag celebration for everything — find some fun ones and encourage your team to share photos or videos.
Along the same lines, there is an endless number of “microcultures” you can cultivate — let people form virtual groups around their interests and hobbies, and then highlight them to the rest of the company.
Or, try organizing a virtual volunteer event to help everyone work together towards a greater cause. The important thing when improving employee engagement is to find new ways for people to communicate and share experiences.
Cultivate professional skills
Professional development can be a huge motivator for employees, and Elena believes this should still be front and center in the remote workplace. Encourage programs that will help with internal mobility, whether the person’s seeking a promotion or a change in responsibilities. And, give your team easy access to online learning resources and classes so they can keep learning new skills to thrive in the workplace.
You can also help employees succeed more generally by developing soft skills. Elena suggests starting a virtual book club focused on material that can improve public speaking, copywriting, negotiation, and more.
Care for your employees
Treating your employees like cogs in a machine will only lead to unmotivated work and burnout. Instead, Elena says you should celebrate the work that people have done, and make sure they feel like they’re being heard. The leaders of your company should set the example — be transparent and vulnerable when addressing the company, and appear on video for updates and check-ins.
Self-care is also paramount, especially as the lines between work and home have been blurred. In addition to encouraging employees to sign off after work hours, you can also implement other remote health initiatives, such as shortened Friday hours, guided meditation, online yoga classes, and more.
Additionally, you should be especially mindful of supporting families, as they also have to work through the challenges around virtual classes for their kids. Provide resources and support to help parents navigate online learning.
Now it’s your turn. Look to the three Cs — connect, cultivate, and care — when you’re developing ways to boost employee engagement. Do you have your own tips to share? Create a Prezi video and tag it with #EmployeeEngagement and your video may be featured on our Video Gallery.