Organizations and employees in the twenty-first century are faced with the threat of managing attitudes at the workplace for optimum output. This phenomenon can be described as employee engagement. It entails the employees feeling proud to be associated with the organization and working within the framework of the outlined goals and objectives. However, the current situation indicates low emotional behavior at the workplace that significantly reduces productivity.
The potential causes of the threat of employee engagement include Strategic alignment where the employees are not informed of the particular direction the organization should follow in order to attain the outlined objectives. The management assumes that informing the employees the expected goals at the end of a certain period in enough. However, this creates a gap where these employees compromise quality and focus on meeting the deadline.
Albrecht argues that there is a loss of trust in senior management or leadership. In this case, employees in most organizations do not have complete trust over their bosses, especially in duty and salary decisions. Some workers have the perception that the leaders assign duties on the biased basis. Workers of the same rank and experience may also suspect to earn different salaries depending on their mutual relationship with the senior management. This affects the motivation of an employee towards ensuring maximum effort at the workplace.
The human resource department in most organizations in the 21st century does not allocate duties to employees according to their academic pursuit. In this perspective, the workers feel underemployed as they do not gain relevant experience. The HR department also fails to recognize the levels of academic qualification of individual employees. Instead, they focus on experience. This discourages some workers that are willing to dedicate their efforts in improving the organizational productivity regardless of their experience. However, this arises due to the general assumption that experienced workers are more productive than academicians in the same line of work.
According to Harb, organizations face the challenge of offering relevant training to employees on regular basis. Advancement in this technological age requires employees to be subjected to refresher courses in their specializations in order to make them viable. However, some organizations consider this as a factor that is likely to reduce their general gains in the market. In addition, employees in training session make the company unproductive for some period. In this perspective, the employees are demotivated as they feel that the company does not care about their future skills. The fact that training results in demand increased salaries and wages have also contributed to the lack of willingness from the management to extend such favor to their employees.
The salaries and wages are not proportional to the current living standards. Organizations face the threat of increasing the salaries and wages as it may result in massive losses. This in return is affecting the employees as they cannot afford to meet their basic needs with the meager salaries they earn. Thus, most firms are reducing the number of employees as a measure to increase the average salaries and wages. However, this affects the organizations negatively in terms of productivity.
Georgiades presents that there is the issue of identifying the personality traits of individual workers in order to place them in the right team or group at the workplace. In this case, organizations focus on employee productivity rather than creating a positive working environment or relationships. They assign workers in groups and teams that they are not comfortable. This reduces their morale to exploit talents at the workplace for maximum attainment. Placing employees in the wrong groups as defined by their motives and talents also contributes to poor communication and decisions.
Organizations, managers, and employees can solve the issues of engagement through the following ways that are supported by different theoretical frameworks: the management should engage in regular internal observation and research that is directed towards establishing the personal traits of their employees in order to allocate duties, teams, and groups that they can comfortably participate. Research on employee traits will also facilitate avoidance of underemployment cases at the workplace where the HR department allocates workers duties according to their experiences. This is in agreement with the Hawthorne effect theory where an increase in the employee observation results in increased productivity. In this regard, the internal research and observation will provide an opportunity to interact with the employees and understand them individually for the perceived placement at the workplace. The theory emphasizes on feedback where the department and team leaders provide feedback to the management regarding improvements.
The organizations should have a platform to address the problems facing employees. For instance, there should be employee support programs where the workers with concerns channel them to the management or obtain an immediate solution. The support system should be organized in such a way they over guidance and counseling to psychological problems. Employees that are not comfortable with their average earnings should be advised accordingly through the support program, which will entail the provision of information on possible ways of improving their salaries. This is in agreement with the expectancy theory where people choose to behave in a particular way with respect to the expected returns. In this perspective, the employee support will be changing attitudes in the organization in order to make the workers comfortable and ensure they behave in a way that may lead to goal and objective attainment.
The management should focus on offering equal opportunities, salaries, and wages to employees of the same rank and experience. In this perspective, the organization should eliminate the threat of losing some employees over business claims. The management should have an open system of allocating salaries to the employees depending on experience and academic qualification. According to Hertzberg’s two-factor perspective, the management should focus on hygiene and motivator factors. The salaries and wages fall under the motivator and hygiene factors. The company should have a policy that ensures motivator factors are provided to employees for maximum output. Therefore, through ensuring equity and openness, the employees will be motivated to work and gain the required experience for appraisal instead of blaming biases. This is also in agreement with the Maslow’s theory where the employee basic needs are satisfied before addressing secondary wants. The organizations will be satisfying the basic need of equality through ensuring openness. Another level of satisfaction will come from advising the employees on potential ways of improving their salaries. The employees become psychologically satisfied that working hard will lead them to promotion and salary increment as portrayed through openness.
Employees should be open with their interests and talents at the workplace in order to facilitate training and relevant support from the management. In addition, they should show the willingness to develop a positive working relationship with their seniors. This will encourage the employers to respond accordingly and portray positive behavior that propagates formation of relations. This is also in agreement with the Hawthorne’s theory since the employers and employees will be observing each other with the intention of developing relations. The interests and talents are important to the organization since they act as the basis for training. The good relationship enables the employees to identify the areas in the organization that need urgent training to cope with technological advancement.
Employees tend to emulate the traits of their senior management, which in turn ensures attainability of outlined goals and objectives. In this regard, the management should aim at exhibiting the best traits that show their willingness to attain goals. They should formulate decisions that are attainable by every employee. They should be ready to share the success and victory of the organization with their employees through recognizing and appreciating their efforts. The organizations should change from mare employment centers to communities with a particular culture that is worth emulation and practice everywhere. This in agreement with the three-dimensional theory, which emphasizes on attributes and control as a way of attaining motivation in tasks. In this perspective, the organizational culture, which should be portrayed through employer behavior, should be the attributes that change the workers’ future motives. The emulation should be in such a way that encourages self-control at the workplace. The decisions should directly affect the employees in a manner that they perceive themselves as the responsible people to implement them and attain the established goals.
In conclusion, the threat of employee engagement is affecting most organizations currently and is likely to cause more effect in the future. When the employees are not engaged, they become demotivated in performing their duties at the workplace. The management should establish the likely causes of these threats and address them through different theoretical frameworks such as the Maslow’s, Hawthorne’s, and three-dimensional theories. The employees should also participate in addressing the threat through channeling their concerns to the management and allowing discussions for feedback and relevant clarification.