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Earlier this year, it was announced that AirBnB changed its head of HR position to head of Employee Experience. The announcement didn’t receive much fanfare, but it reflected a quiet, yet strong, shift in how companies engage, communicate and inspire employees.
The question becomes, what is Employee Experience and how is this different than the overused, misunderstood concept of Employee Engagement? This is a big topic so I will cover the key elements over a series of posts, but the starting point is really with the employee. Employees are dramatically different than they were 10, 25 and 50 years ago in terms of skills and opportunities
From employee, to manager, to CEO, I have seen firsthand how employees are now empowered with knowledge and tools to take greater control of their careers. I grew up in an era where people were just happy to have a job, and strived for job security. But today’s employees want meaningful work, highlighted by opportunities to collaborate, take risks, learn and thrive. This mindset drives me to focus on creating a holistic employee experience for my employees.
Employee Experience is about connecting and inspiring each individual so they are committed to the larger business goals and results. It’s about effectively communicating a company’s vision, values, rewards and policies. But, after talking to hundreds of business and people leaders, I’ve learned that the traditional methods of communication: in-person seminars, unopened employee manuals and long HR emails are failing to connect with employees in today’s world.
Companies like AirBnB and Pandora have realized the impact of creating a meaningful, personalized and relevant relationship with their employees – in the same way they’ve done with their customers. The early feedback and results from these efforts have been increases in employee satisfaction, productivity and retention.
In my next blog, I’ll be discussing the core tenets of how we view Employee Experience. If this has been on your radar, stay tuned. If not…. it might be time to rethink how you connect and inspire your most valuable assets – your employees.
Look out for my next blog post about how companies can create a positive employee experience.
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