It's a Bad Idea to Let Belonging Die in Your Business Strategy
At Signature Performance, belonging at work is the cornerstone for our #DEIBefforts and essential for achieving optimal results for all those we serve. Creating a culture of respect and belonging go hand in hand. When associates feel a strong sense of belonging, they are more likely to be highly engaged, productive, and innovative. By investing in initiatives like Signature’s Connection Points and developmental programs like The Emerging Leaders, our teams reap the rewards of increased engagement, more decisive results, and, ultimately, higher levels of client satisfaction.
The concept of belonging at work is gaining more and more attention in the corporate world. Belonging is the sense that one is a valued and accepted part of a team. Belonging is a measurable feeling that drives our motivation, morale, and performance. When an organization encourages belonging and prioritizes it, the results are staggering.
#Belonging is more than feeling “included” or “part of the team.” It’s about being respected and appreciated in the workplace. It’s about working in an environment with the psychological safety needed to voice opinions, ask questions, and take risks. It’s about being supported and encouraged to do our best. It’s about having our unique contributions valued, and our successes celebrated. Last year alone, Signature associates sent out 34,492 of what we call “Pats on the Back,” saying thank you for a job well done as well as for bringing your authentic self to work. That’s about 30 opportunities for acknowledgments for every associate in the company!
Research has found that associates with a strong sense of belonging are significantly more engaged and productive. They are also likelier to stay with the company and recommend it to others. At Signature, this focus has led to a very impressive associate Net Performance Score (aNPS) consistently over 50. High aNPS scores drive positive momentum and increase candidate referrals, helping Signature to remain an employer of choice in healthcare administration. Results like that are why companies increasingly invest in initiatives and programs to foster belonging.
One of the key benefits of fostering belonging is that it creates an environment of trust. Trust is different than psychological safety as the latter is experienced at the group level while trust is between two individuals or parties (Edmondson, 2004). When associates’ work is valued, and their opinions are respected, it encourages collaboration and innovation. It also gives associates the confidence to take risks and try new things.
Additionally, when employees own a sense of belonging, they are more likely to take ownership of their work. They are more likely to go above and beyond to ensure quality and customer satisfaction. Belonging efforts drive a continued sense of responsibility to the team.
Another critical benefit of fostering belonging is building a positive work #culture. When associates feel part of something bigger than themselves, they are more likely to take pride in their work and the organization they serve. This positive culture can increase engagement, productivity, and client satisfaction.
Belonging is an effective way to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace. When everyone feels valued and respected, it encourages people of all backgrounds, cultures, and perspectives to contribute and collaborate. Diversity of all sorts leads to stronger teams and better results. Belonging at work remains an essential focus for organizations, like Signature Performance, Inc., to bend the curve of rising costs and burdens associated with healthcare administration.