Adams & Knight Marketing Blog

The 5 Es: how to effectively engage employees


Healthy company culture is no longer a nice-to-have. Today, it’s a must-have for attracting and retaining­ talent. A Columbia University study shows that the likelihood of job turnover at an organization with high company culture is just 14 percent, while that of low company cultures is 50 percent. Leading organizations are already building and implementing employee engagement marketing strategies. Do not get left behind!

“Employee engagement is especially critical to service-oriented organizations,” says Reem Nouh, SVP at Adams & Knight.

Fact is, it’s an integral part of branding, recruitment and retention, customer experience and overall corporate culture.”

From a marketing perspective, this is a way for organizations to craft something on par with regular brand messaging, in a way that’s about the people who make it all happen. Employee engagement can help transition a transactional employer/employee relationship to a transformative one where both sides see the benefits of one another.

Implementing such a strategy also serves as an opportunity to put diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) efforts into action through representation, ensuring people feel recognized.

The 5Es of employee engagement

When translating this vision into action and results, dividing the journey into thoughtful stages improves the likelihood of success. This proven framework of five actions can enable a successful culture transformation:

  1. Envision success. It’s essential to begin with the end in mind. Rally your stakeholders and work together to build consensus around what success will look like for this initiative and your organization — and how you’re going to measure it. When your team agrees on where you’re going upfront, they’ll be able to more effectively collaborate along the way.

  2. Engage a diverse array of key stakeholders. Employee engagement isn’t just an “HR” goal or a marketing campaign. Pull in leaders from a variety of areas of your organization, including operations, customer experience, and technology as well as HR, communications and marketing. Partnering with leaders across other areas within an organization is essential for nurturing more engaged employees.

  3. Evaluate your current internal and external messaging. Be honest with yourselves about what is — and isn’t — working now. Knowing what you can build on, and what needs to be rebuilt, is critical to establishing tangible steps for moving forward.

  4. Express your truth in a way that will truly resonate with key audiences. Don’t write platitudes that “sound” impressive but ring hollow. Do write clearly, conversationally, honestly, authentically. Transparency is critical to building a strong company culture today, thanks to social media and review sites like Glassdoor. It is critical to get your messaging right.

  5. Evolve your messaging. This is not a once-and-done initiative. So plan upfront for the ongoing resources it will take to continually evaluate, adapt, and expand your employee engagement plan.

Hear our in-house team dive deeper into this topic on What’s the Big Idea about Employee Engagement? and reach out to learn how we can help you get started with a custom strategy to boost your branding, recruitment and retention, customer experience and overall corporate culture.

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