Companies with engaged employees have a significant advantage over their competitors. Not only do they have highly motivated, loyal workers and better retention rates, they also present an attractive atmosphere that helps to draw top talent. Who wouldn't want to work at a business that visibly values its employees, fosters excellent co-worker dynamics and makes employee appreciation a core component of the workplace culture?
These are the organizations that candidates flock to because they've heard of the great people who work there, the excellent management styles and the vibrant, energetic working environment. Just as some enterprises are better at employee engagement than others, so are some cities. What is it that sets them apart?
The top cities for employee recognition
Forbes Magazine reported that a study released by Quantum Workplace revealed which cities have the best employee engagement rates. Although many factors can influence whether workers are satisfied and invested in their jobs, the key characteristics identified by the survey included employees' sense of how often they were recognized. This could come in the form of " a raise, professional development or training opportunities, time off or good old fashioned praise from the higher-ups."
So, which cities were the front-runners?
- Huntsville, Alabama - 73% of workers satisfied with recognition
- Nashville, Tennessee - 69%
- Austin, Texas - 68%
- San Antonio, Texas - 68%
- Washington, D.C. - 68%
- Atlanta, Georgia - 67%
- Charlotte, North Carolina - 67%
- Orlando, Florida - 67%
- Raleigh, North Carolina - 67%
- Tampa, Florida - 67%
Beyond an interesting list of engaged geographies, the results of this survey can tell us a lot about what works to engage and motivate employees. Notably, "personalized gifts" were the least favorite form of recognition, and engaged workers as a whole preferred forms of recognition aside from compensation. "Hostile employees," on the other hand, were interested in pay increases, cash and promotion as acknowledgement of accomplishments, the source added.
Kudos, not cash
These findings align with what has always formed the very code of TemboSocial's employee engagement strategy. Emphasizing that employee recognition is at the core of motivation, inspiration and loyalty, TemboSocial's software works because it appeals to intrinsic motivators, not extrinsic incentives like cash.
In fact, studies from MIT Sloan, the London School of Economics, Carnegie Mellon and other institutes have revealed that traditional monetary "carrots" do not succeed as workplace incentives. For long-term, sustainable, game-changing motivation, workers are far more influenced by recognition, company culture and co-worker dynamics. People seek purpose in their activities and acknowledgment of their strengths and contributions. Only by appealing to these desires can companies engage their workforce in a meaningful, enduring manner.
While "hostile," disengaged employees might be motivated by prizes to meet milestones or achieve quotas, this type of incentivizing doesn't lead to the type of workforce that most companies want. Rather, this strategy could even detract from employee participation, offering less invested workers an outside prize to focus on, rather than inspiring interest in the projects in which they're involved. As a result, they won't be as committed to the company and process, nor will they care as much about producing a positive outcome.
To achieve high levels of employee satisfaction as well as productivity, leaders must create an environment that supports their workers' endeavors and offers the type of social recognition that truly makes them feel valued and encouraged to excel.