By Meiraj Hussain
Employee advocacy is increasingly becoming a strategic initiative in organizations.
Today, organizations are using their workforce as brand advocates to engage in word-of-mouth marketing, share company content on social media, and improve marketing reach and employer brand. Your employees’ comments are what customers, suppliers, and partners believe more than your self-pitch on your products and company.
Turning employees into your advocates begins with a work culture that engages employees, generates greater levels of enthusiasm, involvement, and employer brand commitment.
Here is a list of practices that I have identified over time that help to develop and sustain employee engagement.
- Keep an open channel of communication: Transparent communication makes the workforce feel connected. Give feedback and encourage them to give feedback in return. It is important that everyone feels that their perspective is welcome and encouraged.
- Support your employees’ development: Make it known that you are committed to each individual’s professional growth and career development and provide them with resources and opportunities by making training, learning and development accessible in the organization.
- Equip and enable those in senior positions: Provide the support managers need to uplift their teams. Provide managers with leadership training, toolkits, conversation & pitch guides to help them market your people, products, and brand correctly.
- Reinforce the desired employee experience through all touchpoints: Make sure all high-level touchpoints of the employee experience (Employee Value Propositions, performance management, learning and development, onboarding, etc) are consistent in the messages and desired mindsets they convey.
- Check in often: Differentiate mid-year or end-year performance reviews from ongoing communication. Have regular meetings for performance improvement as there is regular feedback which leads to faster course correction
- Lead with empathy: Listen and understand what inspires, motivates, and demotivates your team and truly understand their day-to-day experiences.
Low engagement and disinterest can cause employees to jump ship quickly and often. It is important to ensure that your workforce’s activities align perfectly with the mission narrative of the organization for sustainable growth. Always remember that your employer, customer, and partner brands are linked and inseparable.
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