As we usher in the last month of the year, many of us will turn our attention to 2019 planning. Human Resources functions everywhere are budgeting and preparing for new technology, processes, and people to get it all done. All of this is well and good, but if we think it equates to addressing Employee Experience, I’d urge you to reconsider.
If your 2019 plans don’t include talking to employees – really talking to them – then your Employee Experience may fall short. You might be thinking, “This doesn’t apply to me because we’re hearing from our employees more than ever through frequent pulse surveys.”
This is probably the biggest misconception I encounter in the employee experience space. While engagement surveys provide some feedback, they’re based on quantitative data that only provides part of the story. If we want genuine insight on what sits behind that information, we need to pair it with qualitative data. And that can only be gathered by taking the time to go deep with employees, uncovering insight about their experience so we can make improvements that tackle the real issues.
Let me give you an example. Company ABC’s employee engagement survey results show that trust in leadership has gone down five points since last year. In the past, they would have reacted to that data alone, creating a plan to get leaders in front of employees more often, to be more open about the company’s strategy, etc.
Instead, Company ABC combined their quantitative survey results with qualitative data by talking to their employees. They learned that, in reality, employees gave leaders a lower score based on some pretty basic things: The President championed a charity event throughout the year but didn’t actually show up at the event itself. Company-wide meetings with the CEO started late and ran late, leaving employees feeling disrespected. The HR leader had promised an onsite medical clinic for several years, but it still hadn’t happened.
Without actually talking to employees to understand what was behind the decreased score for trust in leadership, the company would have tried to solve issues that didn’t exist. Instead, by combining quantitative and qualitative information, they solved for the right problems.
LINX WorkForce Innovations has seen time and again how combining quantitative and qualitative data helps companies break through in truly understanding the end-user experience. We help companies gather the deep employee insight they need to make this happen. Having an outside, impartial group trained in insights and strategy to cut through the noise and lead these discussions will encourage more authentic sharing.
Have you ever tried to solve for the wrong problem in your work? I’d love to hear your experiences below!
Marilyn has a passion for Workforce Wellness. As co-founder of LINX WorkForce Innovations, she is keen on discovering and amplifying the “Voices of Employees” who are the “Consumers of the Workplace,” so that the right WorkForce solutions can be co-created the first time. Previously, she co-founded SIVO Insights where she provides thought leadership and creative thinking for Fortune 500 companies by uncovering consumer insights and experiences. For every endeavor, she believes in the power of a strong company culture, based on authentic connections, innovative approaches and a growth mindset.