Happiness in the Workplace

It is been proven countless times that happy employees are better at everything. They are more productive, provide better service, less likely to leave the company – the list is endless. There are even rankings for happiest companies.

You may even believe in the age old saying, “money can’t buy happiness.” A study by Princeton found “…most Americans — 85% — regardless of their annual income, felt happy each day.” But wait, there’s more!  “...lower income did not cause sadness itself but made people feel more ground down by the problems they already had.”

Yet…despite all the evidence for a happy workforce, the number of companies with unhappy staff, is astronomically higher. Business Insider has a list of 10 unhappiest jobs. Unsurprisingly, these jobs are high in stress and 7 out of 10 are below the $75,000. The “worst” profession is working as a security officer. Security offers earn an average salary of $29,641 and have to cope with highly probable hostile encounters.

In all likelihood, your firm cannot afford to pay all of its employees $75,000. There are always alternatives. Entrepreneur has a list of four values that are 100% free.

The number one value is to give employees purpose. People are not static entities. People are dynamic. If given the opportunity, staff will seek to learn and broaden their horizons. This sense of accomplishment leads to happiness and potentially improving the bottom line.

A close second is recognition. This can be as simple as saying, “Thank you” after handling a phone call with a difficult client. It truly is the little displays of appreciation that greatly impact others. It is recommended for job-seekers to send thank you notes. As a manager, you should send a thank you note to your employees.

Third is fairness. “The customer is always right,” is an outdated ideology that needs to be buried. The customer is not always right. In fact, the customer can not only be wrong, the customer may be trying to take advantage of your firm’s customer service policies.

In retail, it is an unspoken yet widely observed practice to spare no expense in appeasing unruly customers. This is due to fear of punishment from “corporate.” The employee is guilty until proven innocent. Even when exonerated, the employee is still regarded as suspicious for causing disruption. Whether this is appropriate or not, it still hurts overall morale.

The golden rule, “treat others how you want to be treated,” is cost-free and pays enormous goodwill. Do away with the “employee can do no right” and listen to their side of the story. Find ways to improve income to get the most productive and happy workforce money can buy.