|High-Growth Companies Have More Effective Motivation and Communication Practices|
A new study by global human resources outsourcing and consulting firm Hewitt Associates (NYSE:HEW) shows that employee engagement levels at high-growth companies exceed those of lower-growth companies by more than 20 percent. The study also suggests that higher-growth organizations focus more energy and attention on employee engagement than their counterparts.
Hewitt's survey, based on data gathered from more than 4 million employees, compared engagement levels and practices of double-digit growth (DDG) companies (those with five-year compound average revenue growth of 10 percent or more) against companies that achieved less than 10 percent growth.
"High engagement at high-growth companies can be viewed as a chicken-or-egg issue, with some arguing that strong financial performance drives greater engagement," noted Ray Baumruk, Talent and Engagement Practice Leader, Hewitt Associates. "However, our research shows evidence that greater engagement in many cases actually precedes better business results. High-growth companies communicate more, use more employee feedback, provide greater clarity of career path and direction and have more visible leaders. These actions have as much impact on engagement as financial growth and return."
Key findings from Hewitt's survey include:
-- DDG companies provide greater opportunities and support for employee development. High-performing companies typically have better communication around career path and opportunities for personal growth, and managers who are more focused on helping employees meet career goals. Employees at rapidly growing organizations are 18 percent more likely to feel that there are sufficient opportunities to obtain the skills necessary for advancement, 16 percent more likely to feel that they have a chance to improve their skills and 16 percent more likely to know what skills they need to develop in order to advance.
-- DDG companies frequently solicit feedback from employees. Double-digit growth companies solicit feedback on policies, practices and performance nearly twice as often as single-digit growth companies. As a result, they take action more quickly to improve problem situations or remove barriers to success. Other Hewitt research indicates that frequently soliciting feedback allows companies to quickly identify employees' concerns, including what drives engagement, and enables companies to measure the impact of people programs more effectively.
-- Employees at high-growth companies are more connected to the business, its performance and its leadership. Employees at these companies are 18 percent more likely to say that they have a clear understanding of their role in corporate success and 17 percent more likely to have a good understanding of their company's goals. They are 12 percent more likely to feel that they have the information and empowerment to do their jobs and 13 percent more likely to trust senior leaders.
-- Leaders of high-growth companies are more engaged. Across all organizations, leaders are generally 25 percent more engaged than other employee groups. However, the engagement scores of leaders in double-digit growth firms are 33 percent higher than for other employees. This means that leaders are enthusiastic in expressing their confidence in the company and its success and more likely to pass that confidence on to employees.
"Ultimately, people care about and will produce better results for companies that value them," added Baumruk. "While most companies acknowledge this on some level, this study reinforces how critical it is to harness the power of effective people programs in driving bottom-line benefits and improved business results."
Hewitt Associates (www.hewitt.com) is a global human resources outsourcing and consulting firm. It provides services from offices in 38 countries.
NOTE: Engagement was measured through a composite of survey items and is defined as the state in which employees are emotionally and intellectually committed to an organization or group.