Leadership skills steve jobs

18 Employee Engagement Quotes to Inspire Your Leaders

Lynsey May Sutherland
Lynsey Sutherland
September 25, 2023
6 min read

Looking to inspire and engage your employees? We’ve got just the quotes to help. If boosting employee engagement isn’t already at the top of your list, it should be. Organisations with engaged employees enjoy 24% to 59% less turnover, 10% higher customer ratings and 21% greater profitability, according to Gallup

Improving engagement can work wonders for your turnover too. Engaged employees say they’re 87% more likely to stick with your company than their disengaged colleagues. 

There are tons of effective ways to drive employee engagement, from regular recognition to a focus on career development and growth. It’s also useful to share kind of quotes like the ones we’ve listed below. Share through employee communication platforms like Mo, pop them in an email, or share them during meetings.

Employee engagement quotes that can make a difference

1. “The way your employees feel is the way your customers will feel. And if your employees don’t feel valued, neither will your customers.” – Sybil F. Stershic

Sybil F. Stershic is the author of the award-winning Share of Mind, Share of Heart: Marketing Tools of Engagement for Nonprofits and Taking Care of the People Who Matter Most: A Guide to Employee-Customer Care. To make customers feel valued, invest in your employees. Her quote captures this idea perfectly. 

2. “Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability.” – Anne M. Mulcahy

As the former CEO of Xerox, Anne M. Mulcahy is well-positioned to share insight into the connection between employee engagement and business profitability. She breaks down how important it is for an employee to know that their leaders care about them.

3. “When people are financially invested, they want a return. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute.” – Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek

Simon Sinek is an author and public speaker, best known for his TED Talk on the concept of WHY and his video on millennials in the workplace. Here, he offers a succinct insight into the kind of engagement that really matters and hoe to treat your employees.

4. “The way to develop the best that is in a person is by appreciation and encouragement.” – Charles Schwab

Investor, industry pioneer and author of numerous finance books, Charles Schwab has many years of experience and excellent insights into both the sector and the people who power it. His pithy quote highlights how important employee recognition is when it comes to engagement and development. 

5. “Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing.” – Tom Peters

As the author of In Search of Excellence, Tom Peters is a powerful voice when it comes to connecting the wellbeing of the employee to the growth of a business. Here, he reminds us that nurturing and developing employees is how to get the most out of them – and highlights its importance as a leadership skill. 

6. “Take time to appreciate employees and they will reciprocate in a thousand ways.” – Dr. Bob Nelson

Want to know how to make sure your employees are motivated and engaged? World leading authority on employee motivation, engagement and performance Dr. Bob Nelson has the answer. His quote is perfect for reminding us that appreciation can make a massive difference to employees. 

7. “But you can’t maximise resources if you don’t have full engagement. So I’d like to see if we could increase that. And so one simple way of doing that, increasing that engagement is to start with us. Are you going to engage other people if you’re not engaged?” – Tony Robbins 

A leader who isn’t actively engaged and interested is going to have a hard time bringing that enthusiasm to their team, as life and business strategist Tony Robbins rightly points out. 

8. “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work.” – Steve Jobs

steve jobs employee quote
Steve Jobs, founder of Apple, is known for his visionary work ethic

As one of the most influential business owners and visionaries of his time, Steve Jobs led Apple to phenomenal success. Here, he points out that if you want to excel, you have to commit to and be engaged with the work you’re doing. 

9. “Appreciate everything your associates do for the business. Nothing else can quite substitute for a few well-chosen, well-timed, sincere words of praise.” – Sam Walton 

The founder of Walmart, Sam Walton, has shared many wonderful quotes over the years and this one brings it all back to the ways that you related to your colleagues. This quote shows the power of taking the time to boost and appreciate the people you work with. 

10. “Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Ryun

Olympian and former US Congressman Jim Ryun has some very good advice when it comes to building the sort of routines that can help you excel. He suggests that motivation is an excellent starting point, but that it’s the incorporation into the everyday that leads to sustainable success.

11. “Where employee engagement is transactional, the organisation sees the survey as ‘the hero’ – what it’s all about [getting a high score]. Where it is transformational, the survey is merely the tool that directs us to areas in need of attention. It is the starting point from which we can together decide how best to address things.” – David MacLeod OBE

David MacLeod OBE, Co-Author of ‘The MacLeod Report’ on Employee Engagement and co-founder of the Employee Engagement Task Force, offers some valuable insight into the role of an employee engagement survey and the ways its results can be put to best use. 

12. “Engagement is the emotional commitment an employee has toward their organisation and its goals, resulting in the use of discretionary effort.” – Kevin Kruse

As the founder of leadership service LeadX and author of numerous NY Times bestselling books, Kevin Kruse has plenty of tips for those looking to engage employees. In this quote, he highlights the emotional aspect of the connection, showing us how important it is for employee wellbeing

13. “Employee engagement is the art and science of engaging people in authentic and recognised connections to strategy, roles, performance, organisation, community, relationship, customers, development, energy, and happiness to leverage, sustain, and transform work into results.” – David Zinger

Founder of Zinger Associates and creator of The Zinger Model, David Zinger shares his secret for connecting employees to the goals of their organisations – to the betterment of everyone. 

14. “To win in the marketplace, you must first win in the workplace.” – Doug Conant

Douglas R. Conant, New York Times bestselling author and keynote speaker with over 40 years of leadership experience at world-class global companies, shares a pithy reminder about the clear link between investing in people and succeeding as a business. 

15. “There is no quick fix or magic box for achieving employee engagement, it is a journey to connect your employees to your company. And. . . you can’t force your employees to join you on this journey!” – Debra Corey

Debra Corey 1

Author of Appreciate it!: The Playbook for Employee Recognition, Debra Corey offers some inspiring words around the fact that engaging your employees isn’t a one-off win, it’s a consistent and lasting journey you take together. 

16. “Employee Engagement is more than a program; it entails a cultural shift.” – Bob Kelleher

Author, public speaker and founder of The Employee Engagement Group, Bob Kelleher sums up the fact that employee engagement isn’t something you can impose on your team. Instead, it’s something your whole organisation needs to embrace.

17. “Employee experience is the sum of all employee interactions with an organisation – everything from pre-hire to retire. It is the intentional design of a compelling experience for employees in work while employee engagement is an outcome of this workplace experience.” – Ben Whitter

Ben Whitter, author of four popular books on employee experience, gives us a quote that successfully illustrates the link between experience and engagement and how one can influence the other.

18. “Engaged employees are in the game for the sake of the game; they believe in the cause of the organisation.” – Paul Marciano, PhD

As a leading authority on employee engagement and respect in the workplace, Paul Marciano is perfectly placed to recognise and draw out attention to the link between engagement and an alignment of personal and professional values. 

Transform your culture with Mo

Recruitment Collaboration
Book a free demo to learn how Mo can help you:
  • Improve employee engagement scores
  • Reduce employee churn
  • Build a collaborative culture
Book your free demo

Mo is an employee recognition and engagement platform that can help leaders improve collaboration and morale, reduce employee churn and drive change. 

Our platform creates a vibrant culture by developing team habits, encouraging people to celebrate success, recognise results and appreciate colleagues. Your complete toolkit for connecting and motivating teams in the new world of work. Book a demo with our team today.

Join our Community

Sign up to our monthly newsletter for industry insights, employee recognition tips, and news from the world of workplace digital transformation ⚡️