There are many talks about workplace engagement – whether employees are satisfied and happy and its influence on their performance.
Company culture versus employee experience
It was found by Gallup that 70% of the U.S. workforce is not truly engaged at their workplace. This is not just a current trend. The report shows that for the past 15 years or so, engagement amounts to under 33%.
Engagement is usually linked to company culture – the idea that providing environment and perks for employees will increase engagement. However, the statistics show that years of focusing on a company culture doesn’t help too much to increase engagement. This is the reason Aye Moah who is Boomerang’s chief of product suggests focusing on employee experience instead.
For her, a company culture results from collective actions as well as employees’ attitudes in a workplace, while employee experience is determined by each person.
Employee experience is the day to day workplace, the relationship of co-workers and the employees’ goals and values. In contrast, company culture is about the perks and benefits like unlimited leaves, flexible work schedules or free food in break rooms.
Breaking a company’s past culture
Start-up culture played a huge part in changing the office space and the employee benefits. Facebook and Google (start-ups during that time) were offering unique spaces, free lunches, relaxed dress codes and wellness programs. Slowly, the larger corporations offered the same perks to compete for those top talents. Today, most offices have these perks and benefits.
LaSalle Network’s founder and CEO expresses how companies assume perks can make employees happy. It might help temporarily, however in the long run, it will not help with engagement. Instead, bonding with employees, getting to know each one and supporting their professional and personal lives should be the main focus. Workplace traditions to build rapport and communication create a positive employee experience.
Welcoming work-away trips
Typical work retreats involve conference rooms, team building activities or an outside hotel. However at Boomerang, Moah mentions that they already reinvented these company retreats by doing away with the traditional team building activities and trips.
A fun and lasting experience help employee bonding. It can be as extravagant as a team building in Sydney or simple activities with a mix of fun. Work together with relaxation leave employees invigorated and feeling closer.