How to Gauge Your Employee Satisfaction
One important responsibility of being a manager is to ensure that your direct team feels valued, respected and satisfied in the workplace. Making your employees’ happiness a priority is not only good for them but it’s also good for business. Just look at this Harvard Business Review piece which finds that a positive workplace leads to increased employee well being, which ultimately improves interpersonal relationships, boosts creativity and buffers against work-related stress and anxiety.
Moreover, satisfied employees are more likely to remain loyal to their organizations and are less likely to leave. A positive work culture also improves efficiency and effectiveness, which can be reflected in better financial performance, productivity and overall customer satisfaction.
Now that we know the benefits of having a happy work environment, let’s find out if your team is, in fact, happy. Below are three simple ways to gauge employee satisfaction in the workplace.
Schedule Regular Check-ins
Because some employees will be reluctant to offer feedback, especially critical feedback, to their managers, it is your job to create an environment of open communication, trust and respect. Know that this doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to build a strong relationship, and having regular one-on-one check-ins is a smart way to establish that trust.
Check-ins should empower both you and your employee to be honest when discussing work satisfaction and providing feedback on what could be improved. It should be a private discussion where neither party should fear repercussion for speaking their truth. If confronted with less than complimentary feedback, your instinct may be to defend yourself or the company, but it is critical that you allow your employee to say everything they need to say without you interjecting. The best follow-up question to ask them is: What do you need to feel better about this situation?
Distribute an Anonymous Employee Survey
Perhaps the greatest benefit of conducting an anonymous survey is that employees will feel more inclined to be truthful about their concerns. The obvious downside is that you don’t know how individuals feel. Still, distributing an anonymous survey sends the message that you do care about what your employees think. In addition to asking questions about their level of satisfaction in the workplace, find out what specific aspects of their job or the company can be improved.
Take these responses to heart and figure out how to best address these issues. To keep yourself accountable, conduct a follow-up survey to see if your employees feel like their needs were heard in a satisfactory way.
Do a 360 Review
A 360 review differs from a traditional performance review in that it allows an employee’s coworkers to give feedback on his or her performance. Typically, the employee’s manager will conduct the reviews with the employee, their direct reports, and other managers or peers who they interact with regularly. It’s called a 360 review because feedback comes from all directions of the organization.
Questions in a 360 review are geared toward assessing an employee’s contribution or performance in a variety of areas, including: leadership, team collaboration, communication, management skills and accountability. Because co-workers work side-by-side your employee, they may have a better insight into how your employee feels about the workplace and what can help them further thrive. These are personal insights that you might not get in an one-on-one meeting.
By implementing one or all of these ideas into your workplace, you will undoubtedly help your employees feel heard and valued. But your team knows themselves best — so feel free to ask them directly how they would like to provide management with honest feedback. Maybe they’ll come up with an even better idea!