Archive for July, 2012

The Link Between Employee Engagement and Profit Margins

Monday, July 16th, 2012

Recently, Towers Watson released a comprehensive study on employee engagement. The study surveyed 32,000 workers, 1,000 of whom were Canadian. The results of the study are eye-opening, to say the least.

The most startling figure from the study finds that companies that scored high in employee engagement scored three times higher in profit margins. Did you read that correctly? Three times higher in profit margins! This figure can be explained by many of the other findings in the study, such as that 95 percent of highly engaged Canadian employees feel they have the necessary tools and resources to achieve exceptional work performance (compared to a mere 20 percent of disengaged Canadian employees), that 97 percent of highly engaged Canadian employees feel that they have the ability to sustain energy throughout the workday (compared to 32 percent of disengaged Canadian employees), and that 99 percent of highly engaged Canadian employees feel a sense of personal accomplishment through their work (compared to 33 percent of disengaged Canadian employees).

What this study suggests is that businesspeople should adjust their profit paradigms. Most businesspeople respond to downward shifts in the economy by making cuts, which generally requires fewer people to do more work for the same pay, leading to stress and frustration. But if this study’s findings offer any lessons, it’s that cuts likely lead to disengagement, which leads to lower corporate profits. If businesspeople instead focus on employee engagement, the cuts may not be necessary in the first place. Happy workers are productive workers, and productive workers make companies profitable, even in times of economic uncertainty. So, what are you waiting for? Focus on employee engagement and buy pants with bigger pockets to store the return on your efforts!

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Using Pinterest for Business

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

The internet is a mecca for fads and crazes, often replacing one another before the first has a fair chance to catch hold. One “fad” with both vigor and staying power, however, is Pinterest. It is the third largest social media website, paling in popularity only to Facebook and Twitter. But the more impressive statistic is that Pinterest was the fastest site in history to reach the 10 million monthly unique visitor milestone. With such heavy web traffic and an ever-growing presence, businesses everywhere are searching for ways to tap into the site’s marketing potential.

So what exactly is Pinterest and how does it work? Pinterest is a pinboard-style photo sharing website, where users generate and manage theme-based, categorized image collections, typically reflecting the individual user’s personality and preferences. Users can upload their own images or they can “re-pin” other users’ pins, making individual pins accessible to a wider audience. At its most basic level, the site allows users to share creative content and ideas in a fun and interactive way.

Since its explosion in popularity, marketers everywhere have been searching for ways to capitalize on the site’s popularity. Various articles profess “tips” on how best to make use of the site’s considerable traffic. The most comprehensive resource available at the moment is a free ebook called How to Use Pinterest for Business. The book can be found at the following link: http://blog.hubspot.com/Portals/249/docs/ebooks/howtousepinterestforbusiness.pdf.

But if you don’t have the time to peruse the entire ebook, here’s a short list of helpful tips:

Many savvy users host contests or offer promotions through pinning. For example, your business could host a contest that requires users to take pictures of themselves using your products in creative ways, offering a prize to the user who receives the greatest number of re-pins. Or, if you prefer to level the playing field for users with smaller followings, you could create an ad that offers users a percentage off of merchandise for re-pinning.

Happy pinning!

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