Poll Employees

I am a big fan of asking employees about their opinions. Employee satisfaction is just as important as customer satisfaction (see this post about the three legged stool) and when employees are happy, they are a lot more likely to be willing to provide better service. It seems trivial, but employee opinions (if they are even provided) are frequently ignored and rarely acted upon. Some companies and executives do a great job at making employee feedback a regular part of the improvement process (see this post about Legal Seafoods), but others have a lot of room for improvement.

A perfect way to start from scratch is to simply poll your employees. Send them an email survey asking them a few questions about what it is like to work at your company and they work they do. Ask if they have the tools they need to do their job, ask supervisors and management, and ask about the customers. You want a combination of open ended and multiple choice questions to get data that you can not only compare, but act upon. Chances are, you’ll start to see trends and correlations quite quickly.

You can also conduct a poll or a survey to ask about a particular issue. It doesn’t have to be some super-serious issue, it can be about anything. Your next poll can be something along the lines of “Where would you like to have the next company party?” Employees will like that the company is asking for their opinion.

The most important step after that, is of course, to act upon the suggestions. You want to take employee feedback seriously and actually keep their opinions in mind. If you keep asking and not acting, then employees will get discouraged and the act of asking might end up hurting you more than it helped. If you are willing and prepared to take employee feedback seriously and make changes based on that feedback, then start asking. You’ll learn a lot and help make it so your employees feel valued.