Stryker Strikes again with employee engagement!

With business back to normal many organisations are now keen to review their current employee engagement processes. A recent article in HR Zone titled ‘7 Guidelines for Employee Engagement: Lessons from Stryker’ revealed Gallups enterprising new case study on global medical devices company Stryker. The case study illustrated several key principles in running a successful employee engagement and recognition programme…

Vice President of the North American plant operations for Stryker Fred Lorestrani revealed that “engaged people feel good about coming to work every day” The medical supply mogul which employs over 20,000 employees stated that despite their sales increasing by 8.9% since 2009 their levels of employee engagement (which had reached 45%) was just not good enough!

Stryker devised and distributed an employee questionnaire, the Q12 Survey to its staff and this acted as the foundation for their employee engagement overhaul. Initiating monthly meetings including all levels of their workforce ensured that the entire organisation’s opinions were heard. Now with employee engagement levels rising to 57%, Stryker’s commitment to enabling their workforce to voice their opinions and ideas has not only aided production rates but it has ensured that their employee’s levels of motivation and engagement are constantly boosted.

Stryker revealed 7 key principles to help ensure a successful and effective engagement and recognition programme:

  1. Be committed
    It is not just the responsibility of senior managers to ensure staff are engaged, it takes the commitment of the entire organisation in order to see results.
  2. Secure executive support
    Strykers first sign of support came from Global Operations Vice President John Haller whose encouragement and backing was clearly visible from the start. This not only illustrated that their company promises were being followed through, it also reassured employees that the initiative was worth their time and participation.
  3. Don’t Survey unless you plan to follow up
    The common phrase ‘There’s no point as nothing will ever be done about it’ is now starting to change as Gallup reveals that there is nothing more damaging to staff morale than asking employees their opinion and then not following it up.
  4. Engagement is the responsibility of managers and employees alike
    It doesn’t always work top down in organisations and with a lot of constructive opinions and ideas coming from the shop floor, responsibility should be shared across the entire company in trying to increase engagement levels.
  5. Engagement doesn’t come naturally to everyone
    Changing the way you motivate staff is forever evolving and managers need to be trained in order to engage and reach all levels of their workforce.
  6. Find local champions
    Sometimes the best advocates to boost engagement participation are the ones which encounter the everyday issues on the work floor like receptionists or the sales team.
  7. Choose ambassadors to bring good ideas forward
    Ambassadors differ from champions as there is an increased sense of formality as they need to carry messages up through the chain. They are respected and passionate roles who are highly valued within any organisation.

Supporting Strykers’ lucky 7, famous psychologist Will Schutz identified 3 basic needs people have when trying to have successful interpersonal relationships which can all be applied to Strykers current guidelines:

  1. Need for change
    With a constantly evolving workforce it is now essential to ensure that engagement processes are revised annually in order to embrace new methods of motivation especially in financially turbulent times.
  2. Need for control
    Once the structure and guidelines are correct you are able to build upon the foundations for successful recognition.
  3. Need for openness
    So many organisations fall into the trap of keeping things behind closed doors, it is essential to educate and communicate with staff to drive behavioral change and performance.

Now is the perfect opportunity to review your plans for 2012 employee engagement. Taking that step back to regain focus on what are your companies aims and objectives, is vital. Just like Stryker these principles may help you inject that passion back into your workforce for the year ahead!

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