How to Engage Distribution Center Employees

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Engage Distribution Center Employees

How often do you engage with distribution center employees? Engagement with employees is often overlooked. This can be attributed to a misconception that employees are:

  • Unmotivated to engage because of the type of work they are performing
  • Present purely for a paycheck
  • Performing basic tasks that require no training
  • Dismissive of feedback

How Engagement Affects Performance

Did you know that engaged employees outperform their peers who are not engaged?

Overall, companies with high employee engagement are 21% more profitable. You can trace this back a long time in terms of employee engagement.

Douglas McGregor, an MIT professor, wrote the book The Human Side of Enterprise in 1961. It boils down to something called The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.

The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy states, “Whatever I believe as a leader affects how I treat others. And that will reflect in how those team members act towards the company, their jobs, and each other.”

McGregor is basically saying, “If you have negative thoughts about distribution center employees being unengaged and uninterested in improvement, you will start treating them that way.”

All this does is increase the probability of disengagement.

Instead, if you flip McGregor’s theory upside down and say:

  • If I start to expect more from my teams
  • Believe that distribution center employees want to deliver better results
  • Assume my staff want to be engaged and care about their jobs

You can inspire your leaders to do an even better job overall.

Three Ways to Increase Engagement

Tip Number 1: Treat People Well

We do not suggest you shower your employees with steak and lobster dinners. However, ensuring you treat them with kindness can go a long way. Avoid treating them like a number and more like human beings.

Tip Number 2: Build Trust and Respect

Trust and respect are vital to any relationship, especially between the leader and their team member. Building trust and respect means conversationally talking to people, not accusational or demeaning.

View people as though they exist on the same level as you, not beneath you because of their status.

Tip Number 3: Help Others Win the Day

We make the mistake of thinking people are not concerned about the output. Instead, we assume they are there purely to put hours in.

“Do my eight and hit the gate.”

People do want to achieve things, but if they do not have a clear idea of what winning is, they will not be able to drive for those results. As the leader, make sure people know the targets for the day, what needs to be done, and the next day let them know how they did. Think of it like keeping score. It tends to motivate and engage people.

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