Employee Engagement: Employee Strategies

The following action steps provide ideas to help keep employees engaged at work and with one another:

  1. Take care of yourself and encourage others to do the same.
  2. Connect with one another.
  3. Prioritize communication.
  4. Seek out professional growth opportunities.
  5. Find work-life balance.
  6. Take the lead in your own engagement.

1. Take care of yourself and encourage others to do the same.

Before you can take care of other people, you must first take care of yourself.

  • Get adequate sleep and exercise.
  • Take a lunch break and other breaks throughout the day - go for a walk around the block, get fresh air, reach out to a colleague!
  • Step away when you get overwhelmed. Five minutes away from the pressure of a situation can reset your outlook and help you constructively re-engage in your work.
  • Be mindful of your emotional wellbeing and seek support, as needed. Visit the work-life resources for opportunities and more information.

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    2. Connect with one another.

    Find connection at work.
    How many people we know at work and how close we feel to those people, whether as friends or as community members – has a huge impact on how we feel, perform, and grow at work and in our careers. Experiencing more connection at work helps you achieve your goals more often, enjoy greater well-being, have more positive relationships, and grow more professionally.

    Demonstrate respect, grace, kindness, and forgiveness of yourself and others.
    Bring your best self to work and create space for others to do the same. Extending grace and kindness cultivates a welcoming environment for all and sets a foundation to postively and respectfully work through challenges and differences. 

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    3. Prioritize communication.

    You feel more engaged when you feel like you’re part of a team. Whether you are working in-person or from home, it can be hard stay connected and feel a part of a team. Leveraging strong communication skills fosters team building, positively impacts workplace relationships, and improves problem solving to help you and your co-workers feel connected and collaborative. Some ways that you can help foster a sense of community through communication include:

    • Communicate often with colleagues and with your supervisor. Offer support, share ideas, and talk about challenges and opportunities you are experiencing.
    • Take the time to listen to one another. Expressing concerns and feeling heard are key to strengthening workplace relationships.
    • Make it a priority to connect with colleagues by attending gatherings and engaing in conversations before a meeting starts.
    • Reach out to those who are working virtually. Include them in meetings and impromptu discussions when possible. Organize virtual gatherings and activities such as a virtual coffee break or lunch, posting pet photos on a Teams channel, or initiating a virtual run/walk.

      4. Seek out professional growth opportunities.

      Developing your skills, expanding your knowledge, and acquiring new abilities help you engage with your work in new ways allows you to grow professionally on-the-job while also positioning yourself for new opportunities.

      • Through a continuous learning mindset, you can find opportunities to development and grow through day-to-day assignments, challenging work-related projects, webinars and other targeted seminars, and digital learning platforms such as LinkedIn Learning. Consider these 7 reasons why continuous learning is important.
      • Utilize the Online and Self-Guided Learning Library to help you improve your skills.
      • Set goals and work to achieve them.
      • Request feedback from your supervisor and co-workers and listen with an open mind and without defensiveness.

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      5. Find work-life balance.

      Employees can have difficulty establishing a healthy work-life balance. Refer to the work-life resources for tools and information that can offer you assistance with finding balance when managing both personal and professional responsibilities.

      • Create boundaries between work and home life.
      • Work with your supervisor to communicate about your workload and your personal obligations. Discuss timelines and set deadlines that position you for success.
      • Access support and assistance resources through Canopy, our employee assistance program provider, and other community resources to help you find balance based on your needs and circumstances.

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        6. Take the lead in your own engagement.

        Engaged employees have a vastly more positive workplace experience. Improve your experience by actively pursuing engagement while at work.

        Answer these questions to help you think about the things that contribute to your engagement:

        • What are the most and least engaging moments in your day? What leads up to those moments?
        • How do you work best, and what conditions set you up for success?
        • What things during your day tend to zap your energy?  

        Here are a few easy things to do to improve and increase your engagement today:

        • Take a break with a friend at work to talk about one thing you learned recently and discuss how you are applying it to your life or job.
        • Send a note or email to a coworker recognizing their commitment to excellence or quality on a particular project.
        • Tell a coworker when you see their strengths in action, and describe what you appreciate about them.
        • Take pride in our campus community and the awesome work taking place all around. Access and information about good news is all around us. Reflecting on the bright spots reinforces a sense of pride for being a Duck.

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