How to Nail Your Employee Engagement Survey

by Dr. Rick Goodman on April 13, 2016

The employee engagement survey has long been a staple of culture-savvy businesses—and for good reason! Engagement is key to employee productivity, morale, and retention—in short, good for the bottom line. And when it comes to taking the pulse on employee engagement, regularly checking in with employees to see how they’re doing, an engagement survey is really a no-brainer.

As a leadership speaker, I visit a lot of companies that do annual or semi-regular employee engagement surveys. I know that business leaders and HR executives see the value in these surveys—but sometimes; they don’t know exactly what they should be asking. They worry that their surveys aren’t providing them the kind of insights they need.

The Roots of Employee Engagement

It’s all too easy to ask the wrong survey questions when you don’t truly understand what motivates employees. So that’s a good starting point: To nail your employee engagement survey, you have to understand where engagement really comes from. Study after study confirms that engagement is locked into three basic concepts:

  • Employees who understand their role and their fit within the broader organization;
  • Employees who feel like they learn in the workplace, and develop their professional skillsets; and
  • Employees who feel empowered to address challenges and changes in the workplace.

Asking the Right Questions

Once you understand these three drivers of employee engagement, you can begin to formulate some survey questions that really get to the heart of the matter. Here are a few examples of effective employee engagement survey questions:

  • Do you understand the company’s mission and strategic goals?
  • Do you know what you should do to help the company meet its mission and goals?
  • Do you see the connection between your work and the company’s broader mission and goals?
  • Does your team inspire you to do your very best work?
  • Do you feel like you have access to the information and tools you need to make correct decisions in the workplace?
  • When an unexpected problem arises, do you know who you can ask for help?

These and similar questions will help you to gauge employee engagement on the most meaningful levels. To learn more about what you can do to drive engagement, don’t hesitate to contact me directly!

Dr. Rick Goodman CSP is a thought leader in the world of leadership and is one of the most sought after conference keynote speakers on leadership, engagement, and business growth in the United States and internationally.

He is also the author of the book Living A Championship Life, “A Game Plan for Success,” and the co–author of the book Jamie’s Journey: Travels with My Dad written by his sixteen-year-old daughter Jamie.

Dr. Rick is famous for helping organizations, corporations, and individuals with systems and strategies that produce increased profits and productivity without having the challenges of micromanaging the process. Some of Dr. Rick’s clients include Heineken, AT&T, Boeing, Cavium Networks, IBM, Hewlett Packard, and Franklin Templeton Investments.

You can contact Dr. Rick at or call 888-267-6098.

Dr. Rick GoodmanHow to Nail Your Employee Engagement Survey