Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

Team Building Your Way to Better Employee Engagement

Spark Hire has been discussing employee engagement a lot recenlty. For one, it’s a very important factor in the success of your company. If you do not have engaged employees, then chances are they are less concerned with their productivity and the affect it has on the company. Furthermore, when companies are not engaged with employees it is difficult to know where improvements are needed or where recognition is due. Aside from this, employee engagement is also just a great way to create a better company culture.

It has been said that happy employees are more productive employees, and it’s likely that engaged employees are happier than their disengaged counterparts. Plus, disengaged employees are more likely to slack off and waste your company’s time and money. So how can a company work towards better employee engagement? For starters, you can work on creating a team and not just a group of coworkers.

Team building is one of the best ways to start working towards great employee engagement. If your company, department or group of employees views themselves as more of a team, chances are they are going to be much more engaged with your company than if they viewed themselves just as coworkers. It’s easy to think this just comes naturally since they spend so much time together in the office, but building a team- a real team that is connected and communicates with one another- usually doesn’t happen over night. There are a few ways you can start working on team building in your company or department to be more engaged with your employees- and have them be more engaged with each other as well.

‘Tis the Season
It’s no surprise we have entered the holiday season and Christmas is in full swing. It may seem as though Halloween was just yesterday, but the fact of the matter is the holidays are here! It’s a time of stress, fun, food and parties, but it can also be a great time to engage with your employees or with your team. Think of some things your department or team can do together to celebrate the season. Perhaps you want to head a Secret Santa where each employee buys another a present with a maximum price set. It’s a great way to get your employees together and to communicate in a way that doesn’t really involve business.

Having a department or office Christmas party is another great way to get your employees to come together outside the office. This is a standard for a lot of companies around the holidays, but if it’s not for your company perhaps you should think about throwing one. It’s a great way for coworkers to see each other outside of the workplace setting and to relax together. Keep in mind though that it’s best to have your company party at a convenient time where most people will be able to attend. Be sure to announce the date and time well in advance so that everyone can try and fit it into their schedules.

Office Softball Team
It’s winter time, so obviously not all companies across the country can take part in outdoor activities, but not all sports are outdoors. Having a company team that participates in some kind of sport each month or each year is a great way to get employees engaged. There’s no better way to build a team then to have them work together as a team in a sport. Talk to your employees and see if any of them would be interested in joining a league as a company team. Know a place that has a yearly or monthly dodge ball tournament? Anyone in for bowling? In fact, you don’t even have to play a sport to get everyone to sign on as a team. Perhaps your employees would be more interested in joining a monthly trivia day at a bar that is close by.

Communicate with your employees and see if any of them would be interested in participating in something like this. It’s a great way to get the team together outside of the office in a fun setting. The best scenario would be something that meets monthly rather than weekly, since your employees may not want to commit to something that happens so often.

Employee Feedback
A great way to show your employees that you are part of the team and that you want them to work as a team is to ask for their feedback. Give out a survey each month or each quarter, and ask them for some feedback on how things have been going. This is a great way for your department or company to communicate without putting anyone in particular on the spot. Perhaps someone has an issue with the way something is being handled or carried out but does not want to speak on it directly. Having a survey where your employees can anonymously voice their opinion is a great way to gain employee feedback and make improvements in your company. It’s also a great way to show your team that you value their opinion and that you value their happiness or satisfaction in your company or department.

You can also have a monthly or quarterly focus group where your team sits down together to discuss and brainstorm ways in which what they are doing can be done better. What needs to be done as a whole and what can each individual do to work towards that goal? This is a great way to get your team communicating in a very productive manner. Make sure someone has control of the conversation though so time is not simply wasted.

These are some great way to get started on building teamwork in your office, but they are not the only ways. There are many ways you can work on team building to increase employee engagement within your company. Get creative and think outside of the box. The best and most fun team building tactics are those that are unique and creative. Create something that is unique to your company and you will be on your way to a strong team and an engaged employee base.

What does your company do to work on team building and employee engagement? If it’s nothing, do you wish they did more? Share with us in the comments section below!

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by clam113

Nicole Nicholson

Nicole is the Content Editor for Spark Hire and mainly writes for and edits the work for the Spark News blog. She graduated in 2010 with a BA in Journalism from DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois. She has a passion for writing, editing, and pretty much anything to do with content. In her free time she frequents the Chicago music scene and writes reviews on shows for her own personal blog. Connect with Nicole and Spark Hire on Facebook and Twitter