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Workers becoming more engaged

Forty-one percent of employees in North America can be considered actively engaged by their work.

Engaged staff members are not only more productive than their uninvolved counterparts. They also tend to take more initiative, have higher morale and request fewer sick days. For this reason, corporations have been attempting to build more engaged workforces, and it appears their efforts are succeeding.

A survey by BlessingWhite found that 41 percent of employees in North America can be considered actively engaged by their work. This is an 8 percent increase from 2011, showing that leaders are getting better at building confidence and providing encouragement.

There are a number of ways that companies can create an interactive environment for staff, but one of the most influential may be an employee recognition program. These initiatives can help organizations create an environment in which leaders are empowered to provide guidance and direction to team members. Entrepreneur Kevin Kruse stated in a Forbes article that successful engagement programs build on the communication between employees and supervisors.

"The keys to unlocking engagement are in the hands of frontline leaders," Kruse told the source. "Are they having conversations with their direct reports about how they're going to get their goals, including their career goals, accomplished? Are they asking, how can I help you do that?"

The BlessingWhite survey also found that the level of trust between employees and their bosses had risen over the last year, which could contribute to the higher engagement figures. Trust in senior leaders rose from 52 percent to 57 percent according to the survey, while employees show even greater faith in their immediate supervisors with 74 percent saying they trusted their managers.

The additional communication that employee recognition programs provide could help firms build levels of trust by providing a clear link between performance and reward. Acknowledging the commitment of staff in a consistent manner allows the company to create a supportive environment that lets employees to become energized and engaged by their work.

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