Employee engagement affects every corner of your organization, from productivity and efficiency to quality and customer service. When you have engaged employees, it shows! And, unfortunately the opposite is true for disengaged employees. Nearly two-thirds of U.S. employees are not fully engaged in their work and are less productive as a result, according to a recent Towers Watson survey. Let’s put your organization in the engaged side of that equation.

As part three of this series exploring Employee Engagement, we are going to review the steps an organization can take to craft their work environment. Once your organization has assessed your environment and drafted a plan, its time to work on the environment itself.

Crafting a working environment that drives engagement is based on trust specifically that you have faith in your employees’ integrity, competence and show compassion. Trust is exhibited in your verbal communication, body language and ability to listen. It can be tougher than you’d think.

One strategy we can use immediately to create trust in the workplace is the way we handle feedback. It is such a great opportunity for us to learn and improve, yet often times our immediate knee-jerk reaction is defensive. Here are five strategies we can use to better handle feedback, and develop trust in our work environment.

  1. Recognize feedback is an opportunity to improve
  2. Listen and try not to interrupt
  3. Ask for clarification and examples to help you understand what you are hearing
  4. Look for positives as well as negatives
  5. Find ways to implement the feedback

Handling feedback in a positive manner is one way you can build trust as a leader in your organization. Remember, we’re focusing on small changes which can yield big results. So, keep your organization moving forward. And stay tuned for next month’s newsletter as we delve into the next step in creating an environment for employee engagement: Supporting Employee Development.