How employers can reconnect with teams

Research from UKG has found a worrying disconnection between employers and their team members. According to the global survey which spoke to recent job leavers and managers, one in four employees admit never discussing frustrations or thoughts of quitting with their manager before they handed in their notice.

Surprisingly, the research also found that 91% of employers felt they fostered an environment where staff were comfortable communicating frustrations, while just 64% of employees said the same to their managers.

When employee retention is proving more vital than ever, it’s time for managers to take steps to narrow the communication gaps between themselves and their team members.

Employee communication tips:

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Lessons on effective communication from air traffic control

Cutting through complexity

Understand the difference between hearing and listening

Listening involves actively paying attention to what you hear and engaging yourself. It also means understanding, precisely, employee needs. Doing so will drive better engagement throughout the business. 

The reality is that when individuals feel that their needs are being met, they are more likely to maximise their talents. 


Engage with ideas from all members of the business

There is widespread inconsistency in the feedback loop at organisations globally. Even though some employees feel heard by their employer, disparities remain between workers, with some more listened to than others.

For example, younger or non-caregiving employees and under-represented ethnicities and religions are more likely to feel neglected by their employers.

Sharing ideas or concerns should never be exclusive to more senior staff members – everyone deserves to have their suggestions listened to. Garnering a more comprehensive range of ideas from multiple sources will offer new ways of thinking and fresh perspectives. 


Empower employees

If employees feel they cannot vocalise their concerns, they are likely to leave their job and seek opportunities elsewhere. In the wake of the pandemic, workers are faced with a host of new opportunities and are more willing than ever to venture into the unknown in search of new challenges in their careers.

Formulating formal and informal strategies for checking in on staff can be an effective way to boost employee engagement and increase productivity.

For example, businesses can schedule regular calls between team members to encourage them to open up about any challenges or issues they may be facing.

Creating opportunities for employees to express their concerns is the first step in listening to them. Encouraging employees to be more vocal can positively impact their learning and development and listening to colleagues promotes the sharing of talent across teams.

Furthermore, managers that actively engage in essential matters to aid workers will build stronger connections with their team, earning them respect and building trust.

Positive actions have been taken to reduce this inequity between co-workers, but we still have a long way to go in 2022. Business leaders need to listen carefully to their team and adapt procedures to meet their expectations.

The more diverse your workforce’s voices, the more likely you are to succeed, but only if you listen to every one of them.


Neil Pickering is industry manager at UKG