Corporate Leaders Say 'Don't Over-Complicate'

Corporate Leaders Say 'Don't Over-Complicate'

How Do You Improve Employee Engagement? Laz Parking and Randstad Reveal Their Learning Philosophies.

By Matt Gilley

Let’s start with an openended question: How do you define and measure “employee engagement”?

Andi Campbell, VP of Human Resources, LAZ Parking: At LAZ Parking, we measure engagement by asking employees their sentiment toward topics like tenure, effort, communication, management and culture. We are concerned with things like how likely employees are to work for us long-term, how likely they are to say positive things about LAZ, how well they think leaders demonstrate the LAZ values and how inclined they are to exceed job expectations.

Rick Maybury, director of Learning & Development, Randstad U.S.: When we think of employee engagement at Randstad, we are really trying to assess the ability and interest our folks have in being creative, and innovative and going beyond the basic expectations. We are focusing on how we encourage employees to become more selfmotivated and self-driven when it comes to their work, their own personal development and even driving innovation.

How do traditional training tools, like an LMS or a private activity stream, play into your strategies for improving engagement?

Campbell: We don’t think of the Intellum Exceed LMS as “an LMS.” It is a strategic tool for delivering results. If we are continuously improving the learning resources and tools we offer our employees, we are going to continue to see improvements in employee engagement. The LAZ Parking Learning Center is powered by the Exceed LMS, but it has become the launch pad for everything related to talent, and by extension, engagement. So you go to the Learning Center, you can view your talent profile, then fill out your performance review, check out upcoming training opportunities, visit your team’s Tribe (Intellum’s private activity stream). It all starts from the Learning Center. 

Maybury: We believe there is tremendous value in creating curriculums, on-the-job training and career-development opportunities that empower individuals to drive their own careers. If employees are creating a portfolio of capabilities that are truly transportable, even ultimately to other companies, they become more dedicated to our company. Our openness and focus on their personal development, as opposed to focusing only on what we can get out of them, is the key. The Exceed LMS is the tool that enables them to pursue these developmental opportunities effectively.

If you were going to offer a peer one piece on how to achieve the kind of engagement results you have achieved, what would it be? 

Campbell: Don’t over-complicate things. If you mirror employee behavior outside of work as much as you can inside of work, you will absolutely witness positive change. We know that people in “the real world” expect to Google information and get immediate access to quick, bit-size chunks of information at the exact moment in which they need it. We know that people enjoy “liking” photos on social media. Give them the tools to apply this consumer technology experience to their business lives and people will become more involved’  

Maybury: Begin by selecting the tool that enables selfdirected development along a broad base – development that is both career and personal. Then embed within the tool the ability to self assess and track growth. Provide employees with a transportable portfolio of capabilities that becomes applicable through out their individual careers. One of the prime motivators for an employee to engage and dedicate superior effort while they are with you is directly correlated with what that individual perceives as her or his professional and personal development opportunities. 

                             —The author is the CRO for Intellum. More info: www.intellum.com 

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