Pick the Right Employees for Engagement
A big part of cultivating an engaged workforce is choosing the right people as employees. Often, when faced with selecting employees (in other words, hiring), employers focus on candidates’ education and skills. And yes, those are important.
After all, if you're looking to hire a rocket scientist, you should probably make sure any candidates you consider have the necessary schooling and abilities (think: knowledge of calculus and deftness with a pocket protector) to do the job. But really, it's a candidate's traits and behaviors that will be key to his or her success in an organization.
What kinds of traits and behaviors do engaged employees display? According to Gallup, engaged employees
Show consistent levels of high performance
Have a natural drive for innovation and efficiency
Intentionally build supportive relationships
Are clear about the desired outcomes of their roles
Are emotionally committed to what they do
Have high levels of energy and enthusiasm
Never run out of things to do
Create positive things on which to act
Broaden what they do and build on it
Are committed to their companies, work groups, and roles
The specific behaviors and traits that you're looking for may differ from firm to firm. You'll want to pinpoint just what traits and behaviors you seek.
Of course, figuring out whether someone possesses these qualities during the course of a few interviews is no easy feat. After you've landed the perfect candidate — one whose traits and behaviors mesh with your firm — you'll want to take care to ensure that he or she gets up to speed as quickly as possible. That means using onboarding techniques that foster engagement.