May 29, 2014

Why You Need to Customize Your Engagement Strategies for Your Global Workforce

Engaging employees remains a critical ingredient for organizational success, and employee engagement on a global scale holds unique challenges.  Here, it is crucial to have appropriate engagement strategies in place to ensure desired outcomes. According to AON’s 2013 Trends in Global Employee Engagement Report, just 4 in 10 employees are engaged. The diversity of global work environments heightens the level of detail that employers need to address, manage and monitor. In general, organizations must consider:

  1. Culture
  2. Language
  3. Age variances
  4. Geographical differences

Imagine a scenario where you have an older workforce in England that focuses on sales, while your technical development team is located in Asia and is much younger. The first issue that must be addressed is the age gap. The older workforce may be engaged by rewards that include traditional service recognition, gift cards or travel incentives, but the younger workforce likely will require new and innovative engagement strategies, such as social recognition.

The second issue that needs to be addressed is cultural and geographical differences. Unless these differences are recognized, companies run the risk of communicating in ways that fail to resonate with their targeted workforce or, even worse, are seen as offensive. In addition, the same rewards may not be equally valued across cultures.

Aligning your program is critical for global employee engagement. Consider the following when planning and adjusting your global employee engagement program:

  • Understand what drives employee engagement and how these drivers shift during times of change and transition. These shifts will vary based on geography.
  • Pay particular attention to cultural and linguistic differences in your global communications.
  • Offer a variety of recognition options, including meaningful local rewards.

Remember, when creating an engagement strategy for your global workforce, customization and cultural awareness are the keys to its success. For more information on global engagement strategies or global workforce, visit our global resource page.

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