Let me guess: Your executives keep a close eye on at least some, if not all of these four metrics – and I don’t even know what industry you’re in.

  • Satisfaction
  • Safety
  • Quality
  • Throughput/Velocity

philanthropic service

If these assumptions ring true, then why is it that the only time these key metrics are discussed is after the annual or bi-annual client or customer survey? (Assuming you give customer surveys.) Sure, each of these metrics is critical to maintaining and growing a successful business, but there is one other key metric that you should be aware of: Employee engagement. Yep. Employee engagement might not be at the top of mind, but actually holds more power than you think. This key metric has the ability to connect and drive every other you’re tracking, and have influence them each independently.

So let’s back up. What exactly is an engaged employee? According to Engage for Success, an organization “committed to the idea that there is a better way to work,” an engaged employee is committed to their organizations goals and values, and actively seeks to contribute the company’s success. These individuals feel they are an important part of their team and will often go the extra mile in everything they do, especially when working with customers. They’re more than just “satisfied” employees who show up, get their jobs done, and leave.

As experts and studies have shown, engaged employees can have a huge impact on the way that a company deals with customer service situations related to questions, tech glitches, product problems and general dissatisfaction. These impacts occur from the customer’s first experience with a brand, through their entire (hopefully infinite) relationship with them. More so, engaged employees can influence each other, motiving and drawing the best attitudes and greatest productivity out of one another.

Millenials

But what about unengaged employees? Those team members that are merely “satisfied,” if that? A Gallup study discussed in Inc. stated, “Just 30% of American workers are engaged at work… costing the nation $450 billion to $550 billion per year in lost productivity.” That lost productivity often includes lost clients. For many companies it may start at the beginning of the sales and marketing process, when these unengaged team members lack the motivation to pursue and secure sales opportunities.

However, the greatest losses often occur after a customer has signed the dotted line and joined your brand. This means that you have already lost the very next sale because you’re failing to create engaged employees to take care of that customer’s entire journey.

An engaged employee should strive for successful customer interactions for their own personal growth as much as their company’s. Kevin Kruse even calls employee engagement the “wonder drug” for customer satisfaction. Creating integrated, productive, and positive interactions will help to ensure your customer’s returns.

Considering these drastic measurements, it’s about time companies begin to consider these less obvious metrics, and include them in regular statistical reviews. Means of measuring employee engagement will differ for every organization, but it’s value is equally important across the board. So while you are developing your digital marketing strategies, creating your social communities, and defining your sales and support models, don’t forget to think about the one element most critical to your success: encouraging and supporting active customer engagement. After all, I think we can agree that your employees are your biggest asset as a business, no matter what industry you’re in.