Last month I celebrated 11 years with Padilla. What started out as a summer internship just after graduating college became the place that has shaped my career for over a decade. And whenever anyone asks me what I love most about working at Padilla, I always say the same thing: the people. I’ve been lucky to work alongside talented teammates and inspiring leaders, all of whom have helped me become the communications professional that I am today.

So it doesn’t surprise me that research shows that who you work with has a huge impact on your engagement level. According to Quantum Workplace, “relationships with coworkers” are among the top drivers of employee engagement, with 77% of employees listing them as a priority. And we know that when employees are engaged, they are more likely to stay and help drive success for your organization.

To drive engagement, companies should encourage their employees to build strong relationships at work. Here are three examples of relationships you can help employees cultivate:

  • A Good Mentor – This is someone who has been where the employee is now, who can help them figure out where they want to go and how to get there. A good mentor also shares their own mistakes so that the employee can learn from them. Here are some tips for establishing a successful mentorship program at your company.
  • A Trusted Peer – In one Gallup study, 30% of respondents who reported having a best friend at work were seven times more likely to be engaged at their jobs. Whether they consider them a best friend or not, a trusted peer gives an employee someone to exchange ideas with, someone who can help them see different perspectives, and someone to celebrate (or commiserate) with at times. Here are three recommendations for fostering friendships within your organization.
  • Someone to Coach – It can be just as rewarding to help someone achieve their goals as it is to achieve your own. A couch helps others build the skills they need to succeed in their career. Taking on a coaching role can also reenergize an employee and help them feel more connected to their own career. Also, note that coaching is not the same thing as managing. This article explains the difference between the two and how to know when to coach and when to manage.

Employees want to build meaningful connections, and the best employers are the ones that recognize this and foster ways for them to do so.

Every month, we’re highlighting stories, trends and tips related to employee engagement and workplace culture that organizations should be keeping top-of-mind in order to engage, retain and recruit top talent.

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