Simple Strategies to Solve 3 Major Employee Engagement Issues

Have you noticed that individuals at your organization are negative, unfocused, or dissatisfied? Here are three common employee engagement issues that are often overlooked, and how you can fix them.


Have you noticed that individuals at your organization are negative, unfocused, or dissatisfied? Here are three common employee engagement issues that are often overlooked, and how you can fix them.

As outlined in our recent article, Why Employee Engagement Matters & How You Can Track It, employee engagement can have a huge impact on your organization’s bottom line.

If you’ve discovered that people at your organization are not feeling engaged with your workplace, the next stage is crucial: you must determine why.

A variety of things can lower engagement, such as unmotivated or cynical employees. In this article, however, our team looks at three other major issues that can result from poor engagement that are often overlooked.

3 Big Employee Engagement Issues & the Simple Strategies to Solve Them

Below are three common problems that are often related to low employee engagement, and the strategies that our team recommends to address them.

Issue #1: Poor Quality of Work

If your team isn’t delivering the same quality of work that they used to, there’s a good chance that they’re no longer feeling engaged in their role.

Potential Cause: Lack of Regular Feedback

Providing timely feedback is one of the most crucial parts of keeping employees engaged in the work they are doing.

While giving negative feedback can make some people uncomfortable, it truly is the best way to make sure employees know what is expected of them. If they continually hit roadblocks but don’t know what they’re doing wrong, then they might just give up entirely. It's important, however, to make sure that you present your suggestions and advice in a constructive way.

And, remember, feedback doesn’t always have to be negative! Try to provide positive and encouraging comments whenever possible, so that employees know when they’re on the right track, and feel recognized for a job well done.

Recommended Solution: Communicate Consistent Feedback

Get into the habit of providing feedback on a regular basis. It’s the only way employees are going to know how to grow and improve in their role.

Don’t wait for a performance review to tell employees what they’re doing wrong and what they’re doing right – provide brief, immediate feedback whenever possible.

You can use the Situation – Behavior – Impact model to provide better feedback to your colleagues.

  1. Situation – Start by identifying the situation to provide context for the feedback.
  2. Behavior – Next, you’ll want to give specific examples of what they did right or wrong.
  3. Impact – You should finish by explaining the consequences of their actions and how it affected you, the rest of the team, or the organization.

Issue #2: High Turnover

Are employees leaving your organization all too often? If the answer is yes, your employees are clearly not feeling engaged enough in your workplace.

Potential Cause: Relationship with Manager

It’s true, there are a variety of things that can contribute to an individual leaving a company.

However, the number one reason that employees leave a job is a poor relationship with their boss or manager (Gallup). Surprisingly, it’s not because they got a better opportunity, want more money, or dislike their work. It’s actually because there’s a disconnect between the manager and employee, which can lead to people feeling disengaged from their role and responsibilities.

Possible contributors can include differences in communication styles, unclear goals and objectives, or employees feeling micromanaged. Whatever the case, you won’t know what’s going wrong unless people are willing to speak up and clarify the situation.

Recommended Solution: Exit & Stay Interviews

Address employee turnover directly by speaking with individuals one-on-one about their reasons for leaving.

  • Exit Interviews – When employees decide to move on from your organization it can be extremely valuable to discover why. Hold a formal “Exit Interview” to get a better sense of the reasons they’re leaving. Exiting employees are more likely to be honest, and can help you uncover issues other employees may be too afraid to speak up on.
  • Stay Interviews – You don’t need to wait for an “Exit Interview” to get a sense of why people aren’t staying at your organization. Try facilitating “Stay Interviews” to keep employees around longer. These are great opportunities to discover why people like working on your team, what can keep them at your company longer, and what might eventually tempt them to leave.

Issue #3: Departmental Conflicts

Take a closer look at how departments within your company interact. Is there tension during interdepartmental meetings? Do people from different teams seem like they're on the same page, or are they out of sync?

Potential Cause: Misaligned Leadership

It’s never a good thing when employees feel like they're being pulled in multiple directions. If the leaders at your company aren’t aligned, then you’re more likely to have departmental conflicts and lower levels of engagement.

Why? Because there’s nothing worse than feeling like the work you’re doing doesn't matter, or that other departments think you're doing a poor job.

Employees want to feel valued not just by their own team, but by the company as a whole. If each department has different priorities, then you run the risk of individuals becoming frustrated and disengaged.

Recommended Solution: Get Leaders on the Same Page

Reduce departmental conflicts by getting company leaders aligned. Strong leadership means strong employee engagement!

Here are a few ways you can help your managers get in sync:

  • Agree on Your Goals – Your company leaders should be coming together at least once a quarter to discuss shared goals and priorities. This is the best way to make sure you’re all working towards the same thing.
  • Strategize Together – Each department should have a role to play in achieving your goals. If this isn’t the case, then you may want to rethink what your objectives are.
  • Management Consulting – Bring your leadership team together with a series of Customized Management Consulting sessions. You’ll work one-on-one with a professional consultant to improve alignment and overcome challenges that are specific to your business.

Still Not Sure What’s Contributing to Your Company’s Low Engagement?

You can also download A Manager's Guide to Improving Employee Engagement for more common engagement issues, potential causes, and strategies to improve. Simply click the button below for access to your free copy of this all-in-one PDF document.