Anywhere I look, the so called experience economy is impacting all spheres of businesses around the globe. Consumers are not satisfied only with quality goods & products, but they seek much more than that, they seek intangible experiences. Businesses have to rethink their products & services to adjust to the demands of the new consumer mind-set. A mind-set that is primarily driven by the experience seeking generation called the Millennials and their successors, the Generation Z. Amidst all this rush to redesign service delivery, or create better consumer engagement, we forget that the same consumers whom we are trying to attract are also our potential source of talent.
This is a generation that thrives and uses non-traditional ways of earning a living such as renting out their homes on Airbnb, driving for Uber or becoming freelancers. These platforms allow them to meet new people, discover new experiences and work to fund their lifestyle. This is a generation for whom the reasons why they want to work have more weightage than why they need to work. To put it differently, people for whom money & security alone is no longer the primary motivating factor, what will want them to work for you?
If we replicate the principles of customer experience with employees, we get the employee experience. The employee experience is what happens when an employee interacts with your organization. It would be misleading to think that it starts only when the employee enters the organization. Identical to a customer experience, there are several occasions for employees to interact with your company and form an opinion.
Regardless of the industry, a combination of 3 distinctive factors impact an employee’s experience within an organization:
- Emotional: How the employees feel and the common set of values and behaviour that bind them together, i.e. culture
- Physical: Anything and everything that can be touched, tasted and heard, i.e. chairs, desk, meals
- Technological: Tools & gadgets to get the job done most efficiently
Whenever I read the best companies to work for list, I see tech companies dominate the list with all the fancy perks and cool working environment. A lot of research has been done that proves that higher employee engagement at workplace leads to an increase in productivity and better results. Then why haven’t companies in other industries followed suit? To begin with, experiences cannot just be copy pasted from one organization to the other.
- To truly create an engaging workplace environment of the future, organizations need to re-look at the journey of an employee, from the initial contact till the exit.
- Top management needs to be fully convinced and have a vision of how their employees add value to the organization and what experiences should they have.
- Lastly but most importantly, listen to your employees, keep it simple and act!