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by Laura Troyani on Dec 1, 2014 8:45:00 AM

Are you trying to create an employee

engagement survey from scratch? Are you
just staring at a blank page and dont even
know where to begin? Let us help you.
While its true that there are a near-infinite
number of questions you could ask, you
dont need that many.
In fact, wed say you really only need 10. If
you really want to probe on the factors that
drive engagementsatisfaction with peers
and supervisors, opportunities for career
growth, pride in the company and its products, feeling valued and appreciated
there some very simple, straightforward questions you can use.
So many things go into general workplace satisfaction. While there are
recommended questions to probe on those details (which we've listed out below), its
helpful to get an overall perspective first. The questions below will give you a general
sense for how satisfied, or dissatisfied, employees really are.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you at work?

On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your organization's culture?

On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely would you leave for a 10% raise from
another company?
We were surprised to find in our most-recent research that only 21% of employees
feel strongly valued in their workplace. Considering that appreciation and recognition
drives us to work hard and meet expectations, this was alarming news. Thats why
you should consider questions that probe on this very topic.

Has a supervisor given you any recognition in the past two weeks?

On a scale of 1 to 10, how valued do you feel at work?

Did you know that work colleagues are the #1 driver for employees going the extra
mile? Yeah, it shocked us too! Thats why satisfaction with peers is so important, and
why you should definitely measure this variable.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your colleagues and team
Have you ever heard the saying, You dont quit your job, you quit your boss? Well,
its often true. Regular dissatisfaction with direct supervisors is a major driver of
disengagement. Dont forget to probe on this dynamic.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate the performance of your

direct supervisor?
Our research has shown that one of the top reasons employees consider leaving
their workplace is due to lack of professional growth opportunities. Do your
employees feel stymied? Ask.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how much opportunity do you have for

professional growth in this organization?
Your customers are your best (and worst) advocates. You need to know if they
believe in your product and mission, and the way you run your business, or if theyre
just in it for the paycheck.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how likely is it that you would recommend our

organization's products or services to a friend or colleague?

On a scale of 1-10, how well do you think we service our customers?

While all of these questions are important, there is one that should never be left
behind. Dont forget to ask, Why? Understanding how many yes vs. no answers
you get or how many 9s on a 10-point scale youre awarded is a great start. But, it
doesnt give you true insight into an employees mindset. Ask your employees why
they gave that response. Itll give you a far more robust understanding of just what is
going on.


by Sabrina Son on Oct 7, 2015 5:00:00 AM

Employee engagement is
suffering. A poll by Gallup found
that a mere 13% of employees
are engaged worldwide. So its
no surprise that Deloittes Global
Human Capital Trends 2015
reported that employee
engagement is one of the top
concerns for organizations this

However, leaders are misguided

when it comes to using
employee feedback surveys.
You cant just send one out and
expect it to magically fix morale
in the workplace. But pulse surveys give managers the upperhand in all of this. When you're
probing employees once a week, you're able to truly stay on top of workplace sentiment.

Here are 20 employee engagement questions you need to ask your employees:

Workplace Satisfaction
1. On a scale of 1 to 10, how happy are you at work?
If you want to get straight to the point, this question is undoubtedly the most direct in relation to
workplace satisfaction. Find out where your companys morale falls on the 10-point scale.

2. Would you refer someone to work here?

How likely an employee would refer someone is a reflection on how satisfied this person is at
their job. If theyre unhappy with their job, you can bet they dont have much good to say to their
friends about the company.

3. Do you have a clear understanding of your career or promotion path?

Another poll by Gallup found that employees who get the opportunity to continually develop are
twice as likely to say they will spend their career with their company. Find out if your workers have
a clear understanding of what lies ahead of them. If their answers are negative, youll need to
start offering developmental opportunities to prevent people from quitting one after the other.

4. On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your work-life balance?

Employees need to balance work and their personal life in order to be most productive and
engaged. If employees are feeling lopsided, then thats a red flag that signals burnout ahead.

5. Hypothetically, if you were to quit tomorrow, what would your reason be?

Bad communication, lack of transparency, feeling unvalued these can all be uncovered in this
question. Find out whether your employee feels like theyre there to stay or if there are underlying
issues that are driving them to look elsewhere for work.

Feeling Appreciated and Valued

6. Do you feel valued at work?

Our Employee Engagement and Organizational Culture Report revealed that only 21% of
employees feel strongly valued at work. Use this question to gauge how valued workers in your
organization are feeling.

7. How frequently do you receive recognition from your manager?

Find out how the leadership team is doing with recognizing their employees. If the majority of
workers have said theyve gone more than two weeks without recognition, theres a good chance
morale is dropping. And that can lead to disengagement, loss of productivity, and attrition.

8. The last time you accomplished a big project, did you recieve any recognition?

Feeling valued at work is a huge motivator. This question will help uncover if leaders (or peers
too) have missed the mark when it comes to recognition, and you can work together to find a
solution to this problem.
Employee Retention
9. Do you believe you'll be able to reach your full potential here?

Employees want to work at a place that will nurture their desire for growth. The more
opportunities for growth your organization can offer, the longer employees will stick around.

10. If you were given the chance, would you reapply to your current job?

This is a tricky question the happier an employee is at their current job, the more likely they
would reapply to that very same position. So if an employee rates on the lower end of the
spectrum, then theyre most likely unhappy and wont be at the job for long.

11. Do you foresee yourself working here one year from now?

A question like this is pretty self-explanatory. However, it can say a lot about your retention rate. If
a majority of your employees are saying they dont see themselves working here in one year,
youve got some changes to make.

12. Do you believe the leadership team takes your feedback seriously?

No one wants to work at a place that ignores their employees. When leaders dont take feedback
or suggestions seriously, it shows that theyre not committed to making improvements. And
frankly, it makes employees feel unvalued.

Organizational Culture
13. Do you feel like the management team here is transparent?

Our 2013 Employee Engagement Report found that transparency is the number one factor that
contributes to workplace happiness. Find out how well your leaders are doing with providing
information to their employees.

14. With eyes closed, can you recite our organization's values?

That same Employee Engagement Report found that only 42% of employees know their
organizations vision, mission, and cultural values. A low number is unsettling because its saying
that employees are doing their work without any real understanding of how theyre contributing to
the company or that everyone isnt working on the same page.

15. What three words would you use to describe our culture?
Fun, suppressive, supportive find out what your employees think about your culture. Use the
results to find ways to strengthen and improve your culture to suit your employees needs.

16. On a scale of 1 to 10, how comfortable do you feel giving upwards feedback to your

A workplace should never be a hostile environment. Nor should it be one thats suppressive.
Employees should feel comfortable providing feedback to their supervisors so that they can
continue to offer suggestions for improvements.

17. Do you feel like coworkers give each other respect here?

You want to build a culture where people respect one another not one where heads clash. Dig
under the surface to find out how employees truly feel about each other. If theyre not supporting
one another, its time to start doing team-building activities.

18. Do you believe we live authentically by our organizational values?

Do your employees feel like the organizations values are just meaningless words on the walls?
Or maybe they believe leaders arent living out the values. Either way, an organizations values
are there are guidelines for behaviors and decisions.

19. Does our executive team contribute to a positive work culture?

Are the top leaders in your organization fostering a positive work environment or a negative one?
With this survey question, youll be able to go behind the scenes and find out how well leaders
are upholding the organizations culture.

20. Do you have fun at work?

Employees spend so many hours at work. Find out if your organizations culture is worth people
waking up every day for.

Anonymous employee surveys are an important tool for fighting disengagement and attrition. But
youll need to act on this feedback by sharing it with your employees and working with them to
find solutions to improve the workplace in order to truly foster an engaging environment.

Got a Favorite Question?

The beauty of employee feedback surveys is that there are so many ways to ask each question.
What unique or creative questions have you used in your employee surveys? Share them with us
in the comments section below!

Editor's Note: This post was originally published in June 2015 and has been updated for
freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

by Sabrina Son on Feb 10, 2016 5:00:00 AM

Unless you're
actually a robot,
it's easy to say
the wrong thing
at the wrong
time. Especially
when it comes
to a tender
matter like
reviews. And
there are many
resources out
there that list
performance review topics like personalities, rumors, or speculations. That's great and all,
but now you're self-conscious about what you can say.

So here's a helpful list of 100 phrases based off the book Effective Phrases For Performance
Appraisals that you should start including in your performance reviews. Keep in mind that
these are starter phrases and you should be specific when you're writing any feedback for

1. Achieves optimal levels of performance and accomplishment with / for ...

2. Provides strong evidence of [specific accomplishment]

3. Excels at developing programs / strategies that have delivered X results

4. Improved production by X% through [specific task]

5. Exceeded the original goal of X by X% through [specific task]

6. Continuously examines administrative effectiveness and seeks better procedures such as

7. Develops successful administrative strategies such as [task] that led to [results]

8. Establishes effective systems for information retrieval through [task]

9. Improves administrative support systems through [task]

10. Keeps documents organized via [task] to avoid duplicate information

11. Shows a sincere interest in employees and the solutions to their problems

12. Lends support and guidance to employees by [task]

13. Uses sound coaching techniques to solve disciplinary problems

14. Provides continuous coaching

15. Is highly respected by employees for sharing concerns, problems, and opportunities

Communication Skills
16. Effectively communicates expectations
17. Excels in facilitating group discussions

18. Keeps meetings action oriented by [task]

19. Effectively communicates upward, downward, and laterally

20. Enforces company policies and values without creating negative reactions

21. Encourages collaboration with the team

22. Shares ideas and techniques

23. Builds strong relationships with others by [task]

24. Displays a harmonious and cooperative spirit by [task]

25. Gladly shares expertise

26. Seeks creative alternatives such as [examples] that drove [results]

27. Clever and imaginative when confronted with obstacles

28. Is continuously experimenting to drive [results]

29. Initiates and executes creative ideas such as [example]

30. Seeks new ideas and approaches

31. Empowers employees with the authority and resources to achieve X results

32. Helps employees gain visibility through [task]

33. Encourages employees to solve their own problems

34. Delegates to match personal strengths

35. Delegates with clearly defined responsibility and authority

36. Develops continuous improvement methods

37. Develops totally new strategies

38. Continues to grow and improve

39. Devises improved means of accomplishing results

40. Is continuously planning for improvement

41. Develops innovative strategies such as [example] ...

42. Is very innovative under adverse conditions

43. Seeks innovative solutions

44. Fosters a curiosity for innovative possibilities

45. Promotes innovation by [example]

Interpersonal Skills
46. Recognizes the needs of others and reaches out to lend a helping hand

47. Establishes effective working relationships

48. Generates synergy

49. Builds on mutual dependence and understanding

50. Promotes the company culture among peers

Learning Ability
51. Displays an ability to learn rapidly and adapt quickly to changing situations

52. Shares learning experience with peers

53. Promotes a learning culture

54. Committed to continuously learning through [example]

55. Responds quickly to new instructions, situations, methods, and procedures

Management Ability
56. Provides team with support through [example]

57. Collaborates with individual team members to establish a development path

58. Holds employees accountable for their own results

59. Provides team with the resources needed to attain restults

60. Provides support during periods of organizational change

61. Develops workable action plans

62. Creates flexible plans to meet changing opportunities

63. Effectively puts plans into action

64. Excels in developing strategic alternatives

65. Effectively formulates strategies, tactics, and action plans to drive X results

66. Is capable of distinguished performance in a higher-level position

67. Has reached the level for promotional consideration

68. Is capable of handling bigger projects and assignments

69. Is making a strong effort to acquire greater experience and skills to increase potential for

70. Is enhancing growth potential through additional education and training

Problem Solving
71. Displays a practical approach to solving problems

72. Develops creative solutions

73. Turns problems into opportunities

74. Effectively solves problems rather than symptoms

75. Is skilled in proposing optional solutions

76. Exceeds normal output standards

77. Continuously produces more than expected

78. Is an important contributor to the successes of the department

79. Makes a substantial contribution to the continued operation and growth of the organization
80. Consistently exceeds performance goals

Project Management
81. Completed X project with X results

82. Sets realistic timetables to keep projects on target

83. Is transparent with a project's progress

84. Makes effective use of all available resources when given a project

85. Clearly establishes project goals and objectives

Supervisory Skills
86. Gives consistent recognition to employees

87. Maintains a work situation which stimulates the growth of individual employees

88. Makes certain that employees have a clear understanding of their responsibilities

89. Is readily available for support to employees

90. Recognizes and deals with signs of employee burnout

Time Management
91. Consistently meets all deadlines

92. Prepares meeting agendas that are concise and time saving

93. Keeps meetings on schedule

94. Respects the time of others

95. Makes effective use of discretionary time

96. Excels in living the organiational values

97. Promotes strong support of company's mission and vision

98. Is able to turn visions into actual action plans

99. Demonstrates an ability to transfer vision into execution

100. Excels in contributing to the company's goals

Again, these phrases mean nothing unless you attach specific examples and data to them. To
ensure a performance review is truly effective, remember to evaluate on data rather than

How do you measure engagement?

Our Think, Feel, Do model forms the basis of all engagement surveys we devise. It
helps to ensure that every survey we create for clients measures what matters most,
both for their employees and for the organisation.
This model is grounded in the premise that employees perceptions of their organisation
(what they think) influence how they feel about working there. This perception
determines their behaviour and performance (what they do).
This approach is backed up by leading thinkers including David MacLeod and Engage
for Success, who indicate that defining and measuring engagement in this way is most
effective for identifying how an organisation can improve business performance.

Our employee engagement index

We create an engagement index, which is made up of a core list of questions that are,
statistically, the most significant drivers of engagement for your employees.
1. I am proud to work for the company
2. I would recommend the company as a great place to work
3. I intend to be still working for the company in a years time
4. Overall I am satisfied working for the company
5. I feel a strong sense of belonging to [organisation name]
6. Morale in the company is high at present
7. I am willing to go the extra mile for the company
8. I have recommended the products and/or services of [organisation name]
Gaining an external comparison for engagement gives your results great context. This is
something our clients get through working with us but we also offer the service to
qualifying non-clients too, through our employee survey benchmark exchange.

Why is engagement so important?

According to the CIPD, just 38% of employees are engaged. This is concerning because
organisations with higher employee engagement are proven to be more successful as
employees are more loyal, innovative, committed and more willing to put in discretionary
High employee engagement has been proven to positively influence a number of
important success measures for businesses. It is also very likely to help these

Attract top talent

Increase productivity and performance
Keep talented employees in the business