With just 36% of employees engaged at work, it makes sense for implementing engagement strategies to be one of your organization’s largest retention priorities.
Typically, most think of across-the-board engagement tactics like benefits, salary, and advancement opportunities.
But when it actually comes down to increasing everyday engagement and profitability, the best bet is focusing on some of the most critical players in your team — your managers.
They understand each employee’s career goals, strengths, and opportunities for improvement. Managers help shape the culture that can make or break an employee’s experience.
Despite their essential role in increasing the number of engaged employees, few managers are naturally good at navigating the nuances of managing people.
A study by SHRM revealed that 57% of employees think their managers would benefit from additional leadership training in people management.
For that reason, you may want to consider training the next time you plan on increasing employee engagement in the workplace. After all, employee engagement training for managers may prove well worth the investment.
With that in mind, let’s go over the things to keep in mind to choose a program and a few of the top management training programs out there to kick start your research.
What to look for in employee engagement training for managers
Before you can select a training program, it’s important to know what factors to consider.
Cost varies greatly, especially given the number of remote learning and development options available. While eLearning courses are typically more affordable and easily worked into a manager’s schedule, in-person courses offer the benefit of interaction, personalized feedback, and, often, more in-depth practice.
It’s also important to consider whether you, as a manager or as an HR professional, value certification or credit hours for the time undertaken. The accreditation may add value and incentive for completion, as well as the name of the institution offering the training.
You should also consider whether your managers will feel more compelled to complete the learning experience offered by a big name like Harvard to make up for the additional expense.
Now that you know what to consider before selecting a program let’s go over some of the best employee engagement training programs available.
1. Gallup engagement champions
Workplace advisory and polling group Gallup offers a Creating an Engaging Workplace for Engagement Champions course to help anyone in a leadership position foster a more engaging workplace and support higher productivity.
The course’s primary focus is educating higher-level leadership on how to best help their mid-management increase team engagement. There are also practical takeaways for HR professionals or managers themselves.
Length: Two days.
Location: In-person and virtual.
Credit: The in-person course earns professional credit hours from HRCI (14.5) and SHRM (14.5).
2. Dale Carnegie
Dale Carnegie is a well-known continuing education provider that offers several management courses, including a virtual course called A Manager’s Guide to Sustainable Employee Engagement.
The six-hour course focuses on actions managers can undertake that inspire workers to put forth their greater discretionary effort. The emphasis is on practicing emotional empathy that delivers a long-lasting culture of engagement.
Length: Three two-hour sessions.
Credit: It offers professional credit hours — 5.5 HRCI (5.5) and SHRM (5.5).
3. LSA Global
LSA Global’s employee engagement training personalized course focuses on accountability, change-readiness, and engaging purpose (ACE) as the foundation for a greater level of engagement and business clarity.
Cost: Available upon request.
Length: Two-day workshop.
Engagement technology provider Decision Wise offers an online engagement training program called Engagement Magic.
The training covers the importance of employee meaning, autonomy, growth, impact, and connection for engagement and educates learners on fostering these attributes through various employee engagement strategies.
Length: One day.
Location: In-person and virtual.
5. Harvard Professional Development
Harvard’s The Positive Workplace: Building Employee Engagement and Satisfaction course focuses on giving managers the tools to help workers through times of stress.
There is a large emphasis on building positive company culture through effective communication and conflict resolution.
Length: Two consecutive days.
Credit: Credit towards Harvard’s Certificate of Leadership Excellence in Leading Teams.
Cornell’s online educational division strategic engagement course is ideal for managers looking for more training in the quantifiable aspects of employee engagement.
The course teaches methods of measuring employee engagement, like employee engagement surveys, and guides managers through building engagement initiatives to combat disengagement based on organizational data.
Cost: Available upon request.
Length: Two weeks, two-to-five hours per week.
Credit: Credit towards Cornell’s Strategic Human Resources Leadership Certificate.
7. LinkedIn Learning
LinkedIn Learning offers various employee engagement training courses for managers through its catalog of user-generated lessons.
Self-paced pre-recorded lessons like this one on Employee Engagement are a highly accessible training resource for organizations of all sizes.
Cost: $34.99 for a single course or $19.99/month.
Credit: Online certification and continuing education credit to SHRM (1.25) and HRCI (1.25).
- Harvard Engagement Toolkit
- SHRM Developing and Maintaining Engagement Toolkit
- Dale Carnegie Employee Engagement Whitepaper
- Stanford Employee Engagement Guide
Wrapping up — 7 best employee engagement training programs for managers
Employee engagement training is essential for even the most high-performing managers as their impact has the unique advantage of cascading effects throughout their entire team. Choosing the right employee training method and investing in the right technology is a vital part of creating an effective training program for your organization.
After equipping yourself with the knowledge to engage your workers, the next step is to seek the best tools in the industry. Blink’s mobile-first employee communications app is the perfect all-in-one tool for managers wanting to boost employee engagement.