By Dora Wang   Companies can only reach their full potential when their employees are engaged. That’s because engaged employees are happier…

Companies can only reach their full potential when their employees are engaged.

That’s because engaged employees are happier and more productive than their forlorn peers. These workers love coming to the office every day and show up ready to make a difference.

Does your company care about employee engagement ? If so, what do you do to determine engagement levels?

We know that nothing gets at the heart of the engagement issue like the best tool for measuring it — employee engagement surveys.

If you’re planning to check in with your workforce, kudos to you.

But be prepared: The results may not always paint a rosy picture of what’s going on inside your organization.

When faced with negative feedback, it’s tempting to do nothing or take broad, overarching steps that totally reverse course on what you’ve been doing. Resist the temptation — especially with the former approach. Not acting on a survey may cause greater damage to employee engagement than not taking a survey in the first place.

Research from Blessingwhite discovered the following:

  • 27% of employees reported being engaged when their company took no action to support employee engagement

  • This number drops to 24% for employees who took a survey with no follow-up

There’s also more at stake than just increased disengagement, including employee engagement Consider what a Career Builder  found:

  • 48% employees would stay with a company that asks them what they want and puts that feedback into action

The best way to respond to negative feedback is with clear, actionable goals — not all of which have to be big shake-ups.

Galup, which has studied employee engagement for decades, notes that “employees expect and need resolution, and one of the best ways to do this is through action planning.”

That’s a process in which organizations discuss survey results, identify specific issues to target for overall improvement, and create a plan to enact necessary changes.

Focus on what employees have told you isn’t working, take specific steps, and you might just turn lemons into lemonade.

Here’s a seven-step game plan you can follow when dealing with negative survey results:

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