Personal knowledge key to employee engagement

Employers who display intimate knowledge and interest in their workers' lives will experience improved productivity levels and employee engagement.

This from a recent UK study conducted by leadership development company Azure Consulting. The revelation was a result of responses from hundreds of employees about how much information their bosses knew about their personal lives.

The results of this study were startling, highlighting a clear breakdown in communication across dozens of businesses around the country. The majority (84 per cent) of bosses knew where their employees lived, but this commonly was the extent of their knowledge.

Close to four in ten (36 per cent) held no knowledge of the hobbies or interests that employees had outside work and 40 per cent didn't know what their partner of spouse did for work.

Sue Alderson, partner at Azure Consulting, added that 30 per cent of bosses didn't even know the name of their partner or any children.

"The reason this is important is that the levels to which an employer is engaged with their team can have a huge impact upon the success of the business," she said.

"Engagement with employees leads to, among other things, higher levels of commitment from loyal and dedicated staff, and businesses which benefit from this have been shown to outperform those with low commitment by up to 200 per cent."

Ms Alderson said taking an interest in what the employee does outside off work will reduce staff turnover costs as well.

"Staff who are proud to work for a business and have job satisfaction also contribute greatly to its long-term success and are more likely to be innovative and responsive to change," she explained.

Investing in sufficient recruitment software will assist in this process as businesses can gain more in-depth knowledge about a candidate. This will create a firm relationship from the moment they begin work.

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