Today virtually all companies are in the midst of some flavor of digital change or transformation which radically impacts employee experience, and spotlights the need to amplify the employee voice.  This fact is critical to recognize since employee experience and engagement does have a direct impact on your company's products and services and ultimately your  customer experience and business performance.  2018 might be the year of Business to Human. B2H is a term I hear with increasing frequency across the C-suite of Fortune 500's.  B2H should not just be a marketing goal; we should respect and engage with our workforce in the very same way.

Here are a few statistics to validate this premise:

If culture drives performance why aren't we directing more time and investment this way?  After all, "companies who invest in employee experience are four times more profitable the those who do not."  In our obsession over online experience and digital touch points, are we forgetting about the return on culture?  I hate acronyms, but ROC is a pretty good one.  Beyond HR, does your company have someone dedicated to leading an inspired culture and change agenda?

As you consider your business strategy, below are the core components you can activate today to ignite your employee engagement and drive growth at the same time?  These four pillars can be activated in organizations both large and small.  They often require a commitment to opening doors and acknowledging, and breaking down, some silos that quite frankly may be stifling the performance of your team.

Personalization

Personal profiles

Influence over workspace design

Tool configuration options

Transparency

Digital dialogues with leadership

Geolocation technology

Performance dashboards

Access

To relevant communities

Collaboration tools

Organized decision support

Authenticity

Events aligned with culture

Interior design that supports productivity

Empowered employees

Responsiveness

Listening programs

Control over environment

Analytics to track changes made over time (responding to employee feedback)

When it comes to training, employees expect their learning experience to be more like Netflix, both in terms of user experience and with the ability to learn anytime, anywhere and on any device.  It is also fundamentally important to gather fresh, innovative thinking from your teams through idea labs, or co-creation initiatives that lead to Shark Tank-style presentations to the C-suite.  Enabling a culture of engagement requires consistent focus, but believe me, you get out what you put in. Designing the optimal employee experience should be a core component of every business owner's playbook.

Published on: Apr 23, 2018
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.