Individual Wellbeing and Career Experiences
New Horizons in Management series
Edited by Ronald J. Burke, Kathryn M. Page and Cary Cooper
Chapter 15: Positive manager behaviour for engagement and wellbeing
Employee engagement can be described as: ‘Being focused in what you do (thinking), feeling good about yourself in your role and the organization (feeling), and acting in a way that demonstrates commitment to the organizational values and objectives (acting)’ (Lewis et al., 2011, p. 4). Securing and sustaining high employee engagement is recognized as a top priority for organizations, with reports such as that by CBI/Harvey Nash (2012) finding that it is even more important than containing labour costs. Further, in a report by Rayton et al. (2012), 94 per cent of the world’s most admired companies were found to believe that having engaged employees creates a competitive advantage. This belief is supported by both academic and practitioner evidence findings that show engagement to be positively related at an organizational level to operating income, revenue growth, productivity, innovation, profitability, retention, customer service, reduced absenteeism and safety (e.g., Harter et al., 2002; Rayton et al., 2012). Evidence also suggests that engagement is not just important at the organizational level, but also at the individual level. Employees who are engaged are more likely to be satisfied in their job and life, have better physical and mental health, be less likely to leave the organization and have higher organizational commitment than less engaged employees (e.g., Schaufeli and Bakker, 2004; Schaufeli and Salanova, 2007; Schaufeli et al., 2008, 2009; Rayton et al., 2012). In short, employee engagement is a key element for flourishing individuals and organizations.
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