Employees cannot fully commit to a company they do not feel a part of. Fostering a sense of belonging within the organization, the team, and the work itself is critical for employees to stay and do exceptional work.Scroll Down
According to LifeWorks, 35% of employees say that they feel isolated at work, and the result has been commitment and engagement. In short, companies are blowing it. North American companies spend nearly $8 billion each year on diversity and inclusion (D&I) training that misses the mark because they neglect employees’ need to feel included.
Currently, while remote or hybrid work offers flexibility and saves commuting time, there is a risk that people may feel less connection to their organizations and colleagues over time. When transitioning to a virtual setting during the pandemic, many employees lost the spontaneity of office conversations that they may have found invigorating.
Creating a sense of belonging — an employee's perception of acceptance within a given group — provides human resource (HR) leaders with an opportunity to reinvigorate their inclusion goals and approach. It’s about how employees feel represented at work, representation of age, gender, race, and ethnicity in their team. HR leaders can have an impact before they even consider the work itself.
Employees cannot fully commit to a company without a sense of connectedness and belonging. Fostering belonging within an organization, within the team, and with the work itself is critical for employee performance and enrichment.
Employees are more likely to commit to their organization if they feel:
A sense of belonging can be conveyed as early as reading a job description. Employees immediately are assessing whether they see themselves within the company and within a specific role. Belonging is also fostered over time and includes alignment with core values, being fulfilled by the work, building relationships, and being frequently and meaningfully recognized for contributions.
Belonging in the social sense also matters. Employees spend a great deal of time “at work” which makes the workplace not only a social hub, but also an environment where inclusion, connectedness, and community correlate with favourable job performance and reduced turnover.
A strong sense of belonging positively correlates with engagement, commitment, productivity. In a time when leaders are struggling with changing work conditions and expectations, a focus on belonging can help formalize and optimize the process for introducing new programs and initiatives. For example:
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