Leaders can make a difference.

As a leader, you want to inspire employee engagement. But how can you do this without creating an overbearing, top-down environment that stifles the very engagement you’re trying to promote?

From our research using the Denison Organizational Culture Survey (DOCS), we were able to identify which segments of our model showed the strongest predictors of employee engagement: Vision, Core Values, Capability Development, and Empowerment. In other words, an organization is most likely to have a highly engaged workforce when it has a compelling vision, clear values that guide an individual’s work, the necessary skills to perform the tasks, and an environment where people feel they can make a difference.

Let’s look at each of these in turn to see how leaders can create the biggest impact.

Share a Compelling Vision

Give your workforce something to reach for. By sharing a compelling vision for your organization’s future, you give your employees motivation and direction.

Establish Core Values

If a vision is the goal, core values are the foundation on which to build. They create the groundwork necessary to move your company forward by promoting clarity and guidance around behavior and practices.

Ensure Capability Development

The best will in the world won’t help your employees if they aren’t equipped to do their jobs. When you provide your workforce with the tools they need to excel, you enable their autonomy. Employees are more likely to become engaged when they see a clear opportunity to gain professional skills and promote the company at the same time.

Promote Empowerment

Encourage your workforce to make decisions. Support their efforts, and let them know their input is valued. When an individual feels that their contributions can make a difference in the organization, it empowers them to seek a deeper level of involvement.

Leading engagement is about loosening the reigns.

An effective leader of cultural engagement cannot push enthusiasm onto a resistant workforce. However, a leader can focus on laying the groundwork: showing a direction, clearing a path, providing tools to succeed, and rewarding initiative.

Interested in understanding more about how you can become a better leader? Try a demo of our Denison Leadership Development Survey.

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