In response to the overwhelming amount of retention offerings on the market, Christophe Peymirat argues that bringing in carefully thought initiatives is a key method employers can maintain employee engagement.

Employees are the core of all business operations – and rightfully so. When employees are engaged and aligned, they’re the ones who actively work towards keeping the business running.

But they’re often overlooked, with many companies viewing them as simply a ‘cog in the wheel’. This mindset is one of the biggest drivers of The Great Resignation. Employees are quickly realising that they don’t need to stay loyal to their employers if they feel undervalued and under-appreciated.

For businesses experiencing high employee turnover, they need to take a step back and assess what’s missing from their employee engagement strategies. They can then build a workforce that produces high-performing teams, and an environment where employees want to engage. Here are three simple steps on how businesses can achieve this.


Listen, listen and listen

One of the simplest ways to strengthen engagement strategies is to listen to what employees actually want, because in most cases, they all want similar things – fair pay, development initiatives and diverse, inclusive culture.

Anonymous feedback forms are a great way to encourage feedback across the workplace, as they allow employees to discuss their true thoughts and opinions freely and openly. They’re also a structured way to make employees feel valued and engaged, as they prove to employees that their voices are being heard, not only by their line manager but also c-suite.

Providing employees with sufficient opportunities to share thoughts and feelings – both positive and negative – reduces the risk of management becoming disconnected from their workforce – something which massively impacts engagement.

Although, if feedback is invited, business leaders need to act on it. If they don’t, employees will lose interest and will not take the time – out of their already busy schedules – to share their thoughts.


Invest in wellbeing

 Another strategy for improving employee engagement is to invest in mental health and wellbeing. Burnout is one of the biggest contributors to workplace stress – over one in three UK workers believe burnout is an inevitable part of their career. Stressed workers are less engaged, and the outcome of their work is understandably not as good when compared to those who are happy at work.

Business leaders need to take active steps to create a healthy workplace – such as introducing access to mindfulness apps like Headspace or Calm, promoting healthy eating and exercise, or offering virtual counselling tools. They should also consider policies that encourage a healthy work-life balance, such as early finish Fridays or flexible working hours.

And it’s not just employees’ wellbeing at risk. New mental health research from Deloitte reveals that the cost to employers of poor mental health has increased to £56bn in 2020-21, compared to £45bn in 2019. So, as businesses face a challenging economic bounce back, investing in wellbeing will help them financially in the long-run.


Recognise good work


Finally, businesses must always regularly, publicly and willingly recognise and reward their people for good work. This is the number one rule for strengthening employee engagement.

Employees who feel recognised are far more productive as they strive to produce great work so that they are rewarded for their efforts. And from a business point of view, not only does it increase engagement, but it decreases employee turnover, encourages great employee satisfaction and enjoyment of work, and improves overall team culture.

One simple way to ensure employees feel valued is offering personalised gestures or experiences. For instance, organising virtual team lunches and sending employees digital meal vouchers – like an Uber-Voucher – is a great way to improve team morale and say thank you. Our own data found that 63 percent of workers said that food provided at work would keep them happy and satisfied with their current employer.

Virtual gestures also mean employees can use them as and when they please, as they’re not restricted to attending in-person appreciation events, like face-to-face internal award ceremonies. While a great way to show recognition, this could isolate those who are hesitant about returning to the office. So, businesses must make sure appreciation initiatives are accessible to all.

Investing in employees is the smartest business decision a leader can make. Not only does it drive engagement and productivity, but it builds high-performing teams that deliver great results. Any business that fails to recognise this will fall behind. But those that do, will drive greater financial returns, surpass their competitors and climb to the top of “the best places to work” lists.



Christophe Peymirat is the Regional General Manager of Uber for Business, EMEA. Christophe started as a sales and marketing executive at L’Oréal, where he later worked as a business consultant at Bain & Company.