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Be sure to check out and share these helpful resources to help your employees succeed with feedback.


Worried that some of your best employees are restless and thinking of other options? Follow these talent management tips to identify them before it’s too late.
shutterstock_63635614The cost of replacing a member of your team can be high, which is why spotting a restless or unhappy employee before they jump ship is so important. Identifying a dissatisfied employee can be a big talent management challenge, however. After all, what it they are just having a bad week? What if they are too much of a professional to show any obvious signs of dissatisfaction? Or what if a particular project is putting them in a foul mood? In this post, we will take a look at some of the red flags that will help you spot restless employees.

Employee Satisfaction by the Numbers

Before discussing how to identify a restless employee, there are a few statistics that you should take into consideration. A survey from Officevibe shows that approximately 88% of employees “have no passion for their work.” The same survey showed that about 80% of senior managers are similarly dispassionate. This shows how employee satisfaction is a bigger talent management issue than most people think; one that ends up costing businesses a lot of money. In fact, the Officevibe survey suggests that about $500 billion dollars of the US economy is lost each year due to a lack of engagement. While disengaged employee isn’t necessarily going to leave, a lack of engagement is often the first step to them exploring other options.

Spot the Red Flags of A Restless or Unhappy Employee

Employee shows a decline in performance. This is perhaps the most obvious red flag. If an employee doesn’t plan on being with your organization for much longer, then why give 100%? Of all of the identifiers, this one should be the most black and white since it should show up in your performance reports.

Withdrawal from interactions and communication with managers and coworkers. A restless employee isn’t just disengaged from their work – they are disengaged from their coworkers and managers as well. Keep an eye out for a lack of socialization or assess the situation with engagement surveys.

Consistently Doing the Bare Minimum. To be clear, an employee probably won’t be able to give everything 100% all of the time. If they are consistently doing the bare minimum when it comes to projects and everyday tasks, however, then they may be considering other options.

Their Co-Workers Complain About Them. While a dissatisfied employee may be making an effort to hide their restlessness from HR and their manager, they are less likely to do so with their coworkers. If an employee who used to get along fine with their colleagues and never gave them cause to complain suddenly is the target of complaints, then chances are good that they are thinking about leaving.

You Still Need a Backup Plan

Proper talent management means planning for those worst case scenarios to avoid losing valuable employees. Even if you are on the lookout for restless employees, you may not always be able to identify them and win them over before they decide to leave.

This is why it’s important to have performance management tracking in place to easily identify your top performers to ensure all efforts are being made to keep them happy and retained. It is also important to have an effective succession plan in mind – so that if you do lose a team member,  you can work to minimize the impact on your organization.

Do's and Don'ts of employee engagement surveys thumbs up and down

In a  recently blog post, we spoke about the importance of employee engagement and how a lack thereof can snowball into serious financial losses for an organization (or serious opportunity costs – depending on how you want to look at it).

Employee engagement is an employee’s passion for their job which influences their willingness to learn & perform at work. Because it has been shown that there is a direct correlation between employee engagement and business profitability, it is no wonder that engagement has been a hot topic for quite some time and that organizations are seeking to increase engagement as much as possible.

One of the tips that I offered to help boost employee engagement is to ‘ask’. Since informal polling of staff through casual dialogue is not always feasible or effective, conducting employee engagement surveys is a great way to gauge overall engagement and to ‘ask’ staff about engagement issues.

I just finished reading ‘One Page Talent Management’ written by Mark Effron and Miriam Ort. In the book, the authors serve up clear and simple suggestions for crafting and executing employee engagement surveys.


Ask as few questions as possible:

If this is the first time that you are creating and executing an engagement survey, it might be difficult to hone in on the exact data that you  should aim to capture  but time spent prioritizing items will be worth it. Employees are more likely to complete surveys if they are relatively shorter and survey results are easier to compile and share if they are concise.

Ask Questions that are Actionable:

You might have tons of questions that can gauge engagement; however, unless management can act on the results, they are useless and will not help to increase engagement. A good practice is to run the potential questions by managers and ask them to provide two action items should the answers be ‘low’. If the managers cannot name any items, then the question should be left out, or reworded.

Share the Results with as Many Levels as Possible:

If a properly formatted engagement survey indicates low engagement AND provides the action items necessary to remedy it, then the results should be shared with as many levels of management as possible. Sharing the results is the only way to improve the situation across the entire organization. If the survey process itself is fully automated, then this should not be a problem at all and would make sharing the results as easy as clicking a button. *

Conduct Engagement Surveys Annually:

If an engagement survey is formatted properly, offers a clear degree of engagement and offers actionable items for increasing engagement, then it just makes sense that management has timely versions to refer to. Some companies even find it beneficial to conduct very short engagement surveys semi-annually in order to have timely data and to gauge the effects of engagement initiatives.

Set Engagement Improvement Goals:

After you have conducted your first engagement survey, you should have a handle on the status of employee engagement across each department and the organization as a whole. Use these results to set measurable engagement goals that managers and the organization are expected to reach. Accountability will help to ensure that a company’s leaders at every level are committed to improving engagement.

* Included within emPerform is an eSurvey module that allows organizations to quickly create, distribute, and analyze web-based surveys. Also available with emPerform is a library of best-practice survey questions for all surveys types.

Is your workforce engaged? Tips for engaging employeesBy: Natalie Trudel

Simply stated: low employee engagement costs organizations money. Instead of explaining how, I thought I would let the numbers tell you. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but these are worth millions in business costs.

An estimated 23% of payroll cost is un-productive because of low engagement.

– Only two out of every ten people are fully engaged in their job.

– Only 14% of the workforce is in a role that draws on their strengths.Source: HiringSmart

To further these numbers, a Gallup research poll indicates that 54% of U.S. employees are not at all engaged at work and only 29% are truly motivated and engaged. Imagine only half of employees being fully passionate and driven to accomplish company goals – there seems to be a lot of room for improvement.

Let’s go over briefly what ‘employee-engagement’ is. According to Scarlette Surveys International, employee engagement is defined as the measureable degree of an employee’s positive or negative emotional attachment to their job, colleagues and organization which influences their willingness to learn & perform at work. Overall, an engaged employee is passionate about their job and is dedicated to achieving business goals.

As you can infer, employee engagement is an important factor in business success. In fact, “Engagement is the single most reliable indicator of business performance. The more engaged a group of people is, the more committed they are to generating results” ( Jan van der Hoop, Vice President of HiringSmart Canada). Thus one can assume that an increase in employee engagement should result in a subsequent increase in employee performance. It is this increase in performance that will set off a chain of events that will result in organizational success on many levels including; employee satisfaction, customer retention, increased revenues, decreased costs, and most importantly, a move toward a potent talent-base.

–          The top 16% of employees generate 60% of revenues.

–          The bottom 16% of employees cost the company 20% in revenues.

Source: HiringSmart

So how can you realize the benefits of increased performance by catapulting your organization into the realm of improved employee-engagement? Below are some great tips:


It is the employees who often know why engagement is low and will most likely have good suggestions to remedy the problems. Make sure you are constantly gathering and analyzing employee feedback and most importantly – that you are visibly acting on it. If your organization’s workforce is reluctant to share their paint points, then conduct anonymous surveys or have an outside party conduct the analysis – anything that will give you a window into any discontent. If employees see that their feedback is prompting change, then you’ve killed two birds with one stone because not only does the feedback process count toward engagement, but the suggestions and insight obtained by the process can also spark improvement.



Make sure that employees are involved in as many processes as possible that relate to their career and development. The two-way flow of communication gives employees a sense of control over their future in the organization and provides a preview of possibilities and a roadmap of how to realize them. Involvement also includes providing regular feedback. Be sure to thank them for jobs well done and express their importance in the overall business plan. Employees who are involved and rewarded are more likely to feel a sense of accountability and recognition, which have been shown to be key factors in promoting engagement.



Employees should be given the opportunity to take risks. Employees that have the freedom to dream up innovative and fresh ideas often drive business results. In a world where conformity and having a ‘play it safe’ mentality has been rewarded, many managers might be reluctant to grant the necessary freedom to employees; however, one should note that ‘risks’ can be as simple as allowing employees to suggest and comment on ideas to improve upon the status quo. Giving employees an open-door policy for sharing ideas and innovation is a great way to foster engagement.



One reason why some employees aren’t engaged at work could be that they do not have passion for their current role. It is in both the company’s and the employee’s best interest to ensure that employees are performing tasks and executing goals that are in line with their current skills and development. Clear and concise employee goals and development plans that are monitored on a regular basis and include input from the employee is a great way to ensure that employees are satisfied in their role and are engaged to produce results.


An automated Performance Management solution, such as emPerform, can give you a window into the performance status of your entire talent base – allowing you to identify and address shortcomings such as low employee engagement. By automating engagement tools such as surveys, feedback processes, development plans, and goal management, increasing employee engagement can be simple and cost effective. To learn more, visit www.employee-performance.com