Embedding Action In Your Employee Surveys

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We've recently written about ways to communicate and act quickly based on employee feedback from surveys. But, how can we encourage managers and other leaders to do these things?

Sometimes companies may set survey-based KPIs around employee engagement or manager effectiveness. However, as our research and common sense tells us, these things are affected by many things that can be outside of a manager's hands. There is no better way to demotivate people than to assess them on things they don't think they can directly control - it can lead to a type of learned helplessness.

An alternative approach is to assess the very behaviors they can control and focus on right away. By asking these types of questions in an employee survey we are communicating to employees (and managers) what is expected after a survey. First, we want employees to see the results but we also want them to have had the opportunity to discuss and assess them collaboratively. This is vital for checking which aspects of the survey results have captured what is important to a particular team.

You can ask whether employees agree with the following statement:

I have been provided an opportunity to see and discuss recent employee survey results

We don't want it to just stop there. We want this discussion to lead to some specific actions or ideas for actions to be put in place. The actions don't have to be all comprehensive, but we do need it to be clearly communicated as being linked to feedback from the survey. 

You can ask whether employees agree with the following statement:

My manager, or someone else, has communicated some clear actions based on recent employee survey results

Finally, we need to assess whether positive change has been perceived due to survey informed actions. This is the clincher and ultimately what we will want to see happening - even if the changes are slight and progressing over long periods of time.

I have seen positive changes taking place based on recent employee survey results

These survey items can be combined into a group of questions to form an Action Index and they can form a great complimentary measure to overall engagement or other metrics. You might find that managers, leaders and teams alike would rather be held accountable for these results - or at least be happy to have them form an important part of their accountability in a more balanced scorecard.

About Culture Amp

We've brought together experts in technology, data science and organizational psychology to ensure you can get the clarity you need, when you need it. Measuring employee engagement, experience and 360° feedback is simple using Culture Amp.

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