5 ways to increase employee engagement

Is it possible to commit a human rights violation simply by not asking the right questions?
Leaders should make sure to hire people who raise the overall skillset or potential of the team. Photo credit: Getty Images/LightFieldStudios

According to a Gallup survey, organizations with a high level of employee engagement outperform others by 147 percent in earnings per share. That makes sense because when your staff is highly committed, customer satisfaction levels rise and there is proven positive impact to your bottom line.

In my role at Marcus Hotels and Resorts, I coach leaders in the transformational leadership style. One key feature of that style’s effectiveness is ensuring employees are engaged. Here are five practical ways you can increase employee engagement and help your teams and your organization achieve competitive advantage.

Create and Communicate a Clear Vision

This is your vision, not your company’s vision. It is the rallying cry of your team and department. And it is even better if your team takes part in creating it. To get started, gather your team together and ask them to answer two questions:

Virtual Event

HOTEL OPTIMIZATION PART 2 | SEPTEMBER 10 & 24, 2020

Survival in these times is highly dependent on a hotel's ability to quickly adapt and pivot their business to meet the current needs of travelers and the surrounding community. Join us for Optimization Part 2 – a FREE virtual event – as we bring together top players in the industry to discuss alternative uses when occupancy is down, ways to boost F&B revenue, how to help your staff adjust to new challenges and more, in a series of panels focused on how you can regain profitability during this crisis.


  • Why do we do what we do?
  • What does the hotel mean to you?

Next, pull out key words and phrases from those answers and combine them into a coherent vision.

Provide Inspirational Motivation Centered Around the Vision.

Explain the why behind the vision and ask each team member how they can positively affect the vision. Post the vision in the department and discuss how the team is working toward the vision on a weekly basis in a team meeting. Use incentive-based recognition strategies to bring the vision to life and to further reward and motivate employees around the vision.

Set Clear Expectations

Many leaders set these first, but adults are less likely to buy in to an expectation unless they buy in to the vision first. Once your team is on board with the vision, as long as the expectations fall in line with it, they are more likely to embrace and know what is expected of them.

Treat Everyone Consistently and Show You Care

Nothing destroys motivation faster than employees seeing favoritism occurring. Ensure all employees are held to the same standards, given the same chances to take part in special projects and are recognized equally for their efforts.

Build Strong Teams with High Potential

Courageous leaders surround themselves with people who fill skill gaps that currently exist in the leader and the team. Only hire people who raise the overall skillset or potential of the team. And then train them properly to set them up for success.

Engaged employees actively look for areas where they can add value to the organization because they feel part of it. Use the tips above to increase employee engagement, customer satisfaction and see a positive impact to your bottom line.

Lael Garner-Weadock is the director of training and development at Marcus Hotels and Resorts. She is an active member of the Council of Hotel and Restaurant Trainers. She can be contacted at [email protected]

Suggested Articles

The Urban Park Hotel Collection is currently looking at hotels with 25 to 85 rooms, which will include both independent and franchise properties.

The new features are meant to facilitate low-contact stays while also incorporating gamification into the guest experience.

Teams working remotely or apart can use group video and real-time collaboration for mobile and desktop.