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A manager’s perspective on pulse surveys

5 min read

The discovery of pulse surveys provided a huge surprise that I should’ve seen coming.

My team and I have often talked about the team and individual challenges. Sometimes we even talk about the future. It’s fun to speculate what they’d look like if we can solve them, and how we will improve our teamwork.

Coincidentally, an employee of mine quit a month ago. It was an awkward situation that I didn’t expect would happen. When I sent an email to the employee, the response was clear. He left because nobody paid attention to the problems he faced daily.

As a manager, I had been proud of my open-door policy. This one incident made it evident that I had clearly gotten a wrong picture of ‘how to understand issues at work.’

Simply expecting my teammates to bring their issues to my desk wasn’t possible. Nor was it possible for me to go to every desk and sit with the employees. Whatever happened, happened. But I was determined to change things from there on and start a better relationship with my team.

I needed a solution that would give me a gist of employee issues at a given moment and not 6 months after something happened. At this moment, a friend of mine who manages a large team in another organization recommended the idea of using employee pulse surveys.

Initially, I hated the idea. I had prior experience of using regular surveys and think they are boring, long, and not anonymous, so employees never answer them truthfully. However, I soon realized that pulse surveys for employee engagement are anything like regular surveys. They are short (6-10 questions in general), direct, and focus on employee-level problems by providing anonymity features.

If you’re still thinking about what are pulse surveys, then it’s like a check-in to test employee satisfaction. Never takes more than 5-10 minutes to finish and is anonymous.

How engagement pulse surveys helped my managerial journey:

  • As I mentioned before, it was not possible for me to physically visit and sit down with every employee to discuss their daily problems. However, I wanted to figure out if they are happy or frustrated, so I used engagement surveys to help accomplish my listening responsibilities.
  • All the feedback was anonymous. No employee had to fear what I’d think or someone else would think if they gave honest feedback. And honest responses were what we got. It allowed me to solve real employee issues.
  • Now that I knew about the actual problems, I also knew about the aspirations of my team members. I used this to create better development opportunities for employees, and it helped in retaining them better.
  • Pulse surveys gave me a view of current problems. Not something that happened 6 months ago and cannot be solved now.

The Bottomline is…

that the process of employee engagement is simple. If you don’t listen to your employees, they won’t perform at their best and are likely to leave sooner than later. The overall impact of this on any business is huge. But as a manager, it’s an impact on your career as well. Nobody wants to work with a person who’s famous for never listening to his team.

However, if you do listen to them and help them to do their best at work, it’ll help you do your best too. Pulse surveys will accomplish this without a big budget or changes in the org structure. If you’re thinking about where to start, try Keka’s Pulse Survey feature! It will surely help you understand your employees in a better way.


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    Meet the author


    Sr. Content Writer

    Anubhav is forever weird, but he’s a fun Copywriter and interview host at Keka. Anubhav figured out in college days that with COPY you can get a bunch of very-targeted people to come to your website, consume your material, and even buy. His focus is on making HR easier for professionals and anyone wanting to make a difference in the workplace. When he isn’t writing, he’s either traveling to the mountains, playing football, reading about Tigers, or doing nothing.


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