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Giving and Learning from Engagement Survey Feedback

Engagement surveys bring out the best and the worst in us. For me, the annual employee engagement survey can manifest some insecurity. I believe it has the potential to cause even the most self-assured leader to question their abilities. Any perceived shortcomings are published for our teams, peers, and supervisors to see.

Because I am passionate about my people and my organization, I am committed to making changes that will improve my team and each person on it. I have always felt a deep commitment and loyalty to my team, regardless of where I’ve worked or who my teammates were; the team I currently belong to is no exception. My goal is to build each person up and help mold them into the most amazing, successful, and accountable teammates they can be. I take pride in my focus and drive to produce those results. Even though there are always opportunities for improvement, I feel nothing but a deep passion to see my teammates reach individual and team success.

Without guidance, it can be difficult for an employee to understand how their feedback helps us to improve year over year. It can also be a challenge for a leader to review and analyze the results of an engagement survey to uncover the pearls of wisdom held within. Below are a few pieces of advice I often share with my team before completing and/or reviewing the results of the employee engagement survey.

For the employee getting ready to complete the survey:

  • When you consider the feedback you’d like to give in our upcoming engagement survey, I ask that for any concern you provide, that you also offer a constructive and actionable suggestion to that concern. This opens the door to an open dialogue and collaboration between you and the recipient of the feedback.
  • As much as I sometimes wish it were true, a position in leadership does not come with the capability to read minds, so we look to you to clearly communicate and specify your unmet needs with us.
  • Together we can continue to grow beyond the foundation we’ve established into the bright future I believe each one of you has in our organization if emphasis is placed on developing critical thinking skills and enhancing proficiencies in creative problem solving.

For the leader who is analyzing the results of the survey:

  • When you begin to analyze the employee engagement survey results, remember that responses and comments are glimpses into the individual who gave them, and those employees are human beings with feelings, just like you. The survey will give you an opportunity to review a segment in time of your employee’s experience in relation to the work they do, the teams they belong to and their relationship with or feelings about the organization.
  • Please don’t “who hunt.” An engagement survey is not the place for assigning blame and sometimes you may experience an emotional response as the survey analyst. If this happens, I recommend that you take a beat – switch gears for a few minutes and work on something else, step away from your workspace to engage in a quick, friendly conversation with a teammate, or grab yourself a snack. Taking things personally is easy to do during engagement survey season, but by taking a moment to reset, you can come back to the survey data with a clear head, focused on learning as much as you can from the information at your fingertips.
  • Contact centers are ever-changing and evolving environments both from a technological and personal level. The comments and criticism we receive can enable us to make modifications that can improve the employee experience. It is essential for us to listen to our teammates when they provide us feedback regarding their workplace experience and work-life balance – they are being vulnerable with us in sharing, and for that, we must be grateful. It’s important to check in regularly with our teams to ensure that the commitments we make to improve their work experience are satisfactory and moving in a productive direction.

There is a lot of good to do and it’s going to take all of us giving 100% to reach our destination. If we find that we are missing the mark, it may be time to reassess and reevaluate with pulse surveys to ensure that the action plans we’ve committed to are bringing about the expected results.