We said the other day that if you have a happy team, the company, customers, employees, and shareholders will be happy. But, how is it achieved? Let’s start by defining what we mean when we talk about happiness.
According to Alexander Kjerulf, author of the books, Happy Hour is 9 to 5, and The Happy at Work Manifesto, happiness at work is a feeling that depends on each person. We all know when we have it and especially when we do not.
We have happiness at work when we feel that:
- we enjoy what we do
- we do something we are proud of
- we work with extraordinary people
- we believe what we do is important
- we are valued for our work
- we can take responsibility
Also, we learn and grow, we make the difference with respect to competitors, we feel motivated, we have energy, and so on.
All studies show that happiness at work makes the difference in results. In fact, there are many initiatives to measure this. One I like is the Happiness at Work survey because it is simple and powerful. It is based on a welfare model developed by the UK government in a project called Five Ways to Well-Being.
This model identifies five aspects that directly influence our happiness at work and in life if we cultivate them properly. Let us see what they are:
- Connect … With the people around us. Family, friends, colleagues, and neighbors, building these connections helps us and enriches our lives.
- Be active … Going for a walk or running, having physical activities makes us feel good inside and out.
- Be curious … Be curious and appreciate the details of things and savor the pleasures of life.
- Learn … Try something new, rediscover a hobby, leave our comfort zone to expand it.
- Give … Do something good for a friend or a stranger, and be grateful, smile, help in some solidarity cause, join a community, and practice generosity which makes us happier.
I believe that an organization that systematically encourages these five aspects has a great potential to create a favorable environment for people to be happy in their work. Certainly, this is not the only possibility. There are many other variables, such as those shown in this infographic.
I recommend that you test the survey in your department with your co-workers to see what comes of it. If you are in Human Resources you may be able to test the entire organization. The cost is reasonable and this little effort allows you to know the variables and monitor their evolution over time.
We use it in INUSUAL and found it revealing. Do you dare to try it yourself? If you do, do not forget to share it with us. We would like to contrast impressions and – who knows – maybe even make us a little happier