Change Starts From the Top: Improving Employee Engagement in Uncertain Times

Jun 1, 2020 | 4 min. Read

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Change Starts From the Top: Improving Employee Engagement in Uncertain Times

Coronavirus changed how we work and do business in ways we don’t even know yet. But for all the change going on, one thing hasn’t changed—the need for engaged employees. If anything, organizations require engaged employees now more than ever. Before the virus, employee disengagement levels among American workers reached as high as 70 percent—costing the US economy between $450 and $550 billion per year.

In an environment of economic volatility, today’s organizations cannot afford to ignore employee engagement. Besides saving money, high employee engagement gives organizations the edge they need to not only survive but to thrive in today’s market of uncertainty.

But to create a culture of engagement, leadership needs to play a direct role in developing and implementing an engagement strategy and in finding the right tools to get the job done. That’s where PXT Select® can help organizational leaders create the CHANGE needed to build high-performing cultures that drive results.

How to Mobilize Leaders in Improving Engagement

As individuals with the power and resources to create cultural CHANGE on an organization-wide level, leaders have a lot of responsibility when it comes to engaging employees—especially during times of crisis. Here are a few ways leaders can increase engagement:

C: Create community—Leaders foster a sense of connection between employees and a feeling of purpose in the work of each individual, even when employees are working remotely. That sense of connection and purpose meets basic human needs and gives people and organizations the motivation and energy required to achieve their full potential. That sense of connection and community becomes even more important when individual team members run the risk of feeling isolated from working remotely.

H: Honesty and transparencyLeaders that model organizational values, especially during times of change and crisis, understand that values-based leadership is crucial for communicating a powerful vision and for engaging teams. This commitment to honesty and transparency fosters relationship-building that creates trust and open dialogue. Honest leaders lead through example and set a positive tone for the culture of their organizations.

A: Align employees—Leaders share a compelling vision for their organizations and align individual purpose with organizational goals. They provide clear strategies and action plans to rally their organizations towards the unified pursuit of a common vision—a vision that remains clear even as the future seems blurred.

N: Navigate uncertainty—Managing cultural and organizational change means accepting incredible levels of uncertainty with a balanced and positive attitude. Leaders seek to understand the roadblocks to employee engagement within the context of employee needs before taking action. They invest in understanding and minimizing the barriers that stand in the way of creating cultural change that drives engagement.

G: Gain insightLeaders seek to understand the current state of engagement within their organizations. How are people feeling? What are they doing and saying? Leaders plug into the conversations that allow them to gain a feel for the company’s pulse so they can adjust and act in ways that preserve and boost employee engagement.

E: Enthusiasm—Leaders generate excitement and take time to celebrate hard work and achievements. They make space for affirmation, even with everyday tasks. Leaders understand that the well-being of their organizations depends on the emotional well-being of their employees. Consistent doses of encouragement, joy, and celebration all contribute to emotional health and organizational success—especially when stress levels run high. That’s the fuel people need to keep going, stay focused, and maintain motivation.    

How Can PXT Select® Help Leaders CHANGE & Increase Engagement?

PXT Select takes a multi-faceted approach towards creating workforces where engagement thrives. It starts by helping organizations focus on selecting the right individuals for each role. From there, it helps leaders build meaningful relationships with the individuals they manage so they can create cohesive and effective teams.
When it comes to hiring and building effective teams, most leaders lean on interviews, resumes, performance reviews, or even gut instincts and first impressions. Unfortunately, these traditional methods leave plenty of room for error. Pre-hire assessments like PXT Select provide managers with accurate, reliable, and objective data about how their people think and work so they can make well-informed talent decisions. According to world-renowned HR analyst Josh Bersin, fewer than 40 percent of all hiring teams use any form of pre-hire assessment. Here’s what they’re missing.
PXT Select helps managers take the guesswork out of hiring and making other talent decisions that come well after hiring and onboarding conclude. PXT Select allows leaders to identify whether a person can do the job in question, how they will do the job, and if they will love the job. Hiring the ideal candidate for each position involves matching job-critical characteristics with the innate skills each candidate possesses to determine the degree of Job-Person fit. The higher the fit, the more likely the person will perform the job successfully.
Once leaders have the right individuals in the right places, they can use information from the PXT Select Teams Report to build and maintain teams of people they know will work well together. By providing information on how each individual functions in the context of a team environment, the Teams Report allows managers to help each person realize their strengths and areas for improvement while working with other team members.

Similar to the Teams Report, the PXT Select Coaching Report helps managers assist their employees in identifying strengths and areas for growth while working alone, which is especially important for remote workers. Using the Coaching Report, a manager might notice that one of their employees works at a steadier tempo and does best with routine. With this in mind, the manager can use coaching tips from the Coaching Report to have a conversation with their employee that can help them settle into a productive routine and thrive while working from home.

On the flip side, that same individual employee could look at their PXT Select Individual’s Feedback Report and gain insight into their own thinking style, behaviors, and interests as a way of realizing their personal strengths and limitations. Although this individual employee works best at a steady pace and routine tempo, they still respond well to time constraints and can work at a brisk pace if necessary. But these are crazy times, and if their job suddenly requires them to operate at an urgent pace, they might risk burning out. Luckily, they can use what they learn from the Individual’s Feedback Report to have an open conversation with their manager about prioritization and aligning on expectations. They could also discuss how to leverage the team’s resources to compensate for when there’s too much work on their plate.

And those examples represent just a few of the many ways that the PXT Select suite of reports goes beyond hiring and selection. When tenured employees need support, PXT Select is there every step of the way. Helping employees, leaders, and managers navigate the challenges and opportunities of everyday work—that’s where the solution shines.

So, if you’re looking for a proven talent solution that helps you engage your organization—especially when risk and uncertainty run high—let’s talk. We’d love to show you what PXT Select can do to help your organization improve engagement and navigate times of crisis. After helping thousands of leaders and organizations across nearly every industry engage their employees, we know a thing or two about how to do it.  

Are you ready to talk solutions?

Click here to connect with a PXT Select Authorized Partner.

Learn more about how PXT Select can help your organization select and engage great talent by attending a virtual showcase. Register here.

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