EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT AND THE THREE-FACTOR THEORY
The three things that matter most to people at work
The factors that influence employee engagement combine in different ways and at different times for each person. Obviously, pay and leadership are important – with a direct relationship between pay and effort and the quality of leadership being critical to employee engagement. In addition, people like to do work that has meaning and purpose.
Following international research, Sirota Consulting developed the Three-Factor Theory, addressing employee engagement by addressing three basic needs: equity, achievement and camaraderie.
Leaders need to engage, inspire and energize their people. Gaining commitment and getting people to acquire new skills and achieve their full potential leads to ongoing improvements in performance, benefiting all concerned – individuals, teams and companies. The Three Factor Theory establishes a self-sustaining cycle of effective employee engagement by ensuring that practices and policies focus on equity, achievement and camaraderie.
People need to feel they are being treated fairly – especially in relation to others both inside and outside the company. This includes:
· physical aspects – for example, working in a safe environment and being physically able to do a job
· economic factors – people need to feel that their pay, benefits and job security are fair
· psychological issues – including being treated with respect and consideration.
People work better and achieve more if they believe in what they are doing and have confidence in the direction they are going. In short, they work best when they feel they are achieving something. Six issues influence this:
1. Having challenging work and being able to use their skills
2. Having the opportunity to develop their capabilities and to take risks
3. Having the resources, authority, information and support to work effectively
4. Knowing that the work is important and has value and purpose
5. Receiving recognition – both financial and non-financial
6. Having pride in the company’s aims, ethics, products and brand values.
It is important for individuals to have good relations with co-workers. This requires congenial, co-operative, interesting and supportive relationships at all levels, with the most immediate ones being the most significant. This involves relationships:
· with co-workers
· within the business unit
· across on-site departments
· across the whole company.