As a business leader, the principles of content marketing also apply to keeping your employees engaged. In your web content, you appeal to your ideal customers by being informative, helpful, and interested in their challenges. Those are the same keys to help your staff maintain enthusiasm and high performance.
A few days ago I wrote about how vital it is to publish web content that is customer-focused and inspirational to them so that:
- Your target audience reads content relevant to their needs
- You help solve some of their biggest challenges
- You demonstrate you understand their problems
- You build credibility and expertise in their eyes
- You inform them and entertain them so they’ll keep coming back
- Readers come to know, like and engage with your company
These ideal content marketing principles apply to your employees as well. In order to engage them fully and meaningfully in the work they do for your company, you need to grab their attention, speak to them about issues that truly matter, show you’re trustworthy, and help them solve their challenges.
You have to show you care about them, not just as a work performance group, but as individuals. This means more than incentives and rewards and company social activities.
In an interesting book by Jeff Grimshaw and Gregg Baron, Leadership without Excuses, this requires setting conditions of accountability:
- Communicate clear and credible expectations
- Create compelling consequences
- Leading conversations grounded in empirical reality
When you fail to set these conditions of accountability, either through lack of clarity, inconsequential punishments or rewards, and don’t have real conversations about what’s going on, then your people resort to making excuses. That’s when engagement starts to wane. Attention and care go by the wayside.
Meaningful Work Keeps Employees Engaged
People enjoy being engaged in meaningful work. Humans, by nature, are a passionate species, and most of us seek out stimulating experiences. Companies that recognize this and actively cultivate and communicate a worthwhile corporate purpose become employers of choice. Here’s what the research shows about lack of employee engagement:
Put simply, satisfied and engaged employees perform better. In a Towers Watson study of roughly 90,000 employees across 18 countries, companies with the most engaged employees reported a 19% increase in operating income and 28% growth in earnings per share. Companies whose employees had the lowest level of engagement had a 32% decline in operating income and an 11% drop in earnings.
A major Gallup Organization research study identified 12 critical elements for creating highly engaged employees. About half deal with employees’ sense of belonging. One of the key criteria is captured in the following statement: “The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important.”
Is your company paying as much attention to the well-being of your internal customers (your staff) as it does to acquiring external clients? As the saying goes, you can’t have one without the other. Not for long.
Questions? Of course there’s a lot more to growing a successful business than meets the eye. That’s why an outside consultant can help you see what you can’t see because you’re too close to the blackboard. Let’s talk: Skype: Brenda_Stoltz or, phone: 703-728-1336.