Happiness at work is one of the key motivators for leaders in the next three years. There is a real emphasis on improving workplace morale, and thus productivity by business leaders after employee engagement hitting an all-time low.
Happiness in the workplace, collaboration and purpose are all now big factors for prospective employees who are now motivated by more than just money. The millennial generation has helped pave the way for new ways of thinking with their ‘purpose before money’ mindset. As a result, the whole workplace doesn’t just come to work because they have to anymore. Now, employees come to the places they love to work because they know they can.
can you improve happiness at work?
It’s a tough question to ask yourself – “could we improve our workplace happiness?” Without objective thinking, many leaders may be unaware that morale has dropped. It’s important to get perspective and a clear set of eyes when you can.
The best way to approach this is by finding out from your team first hand. Look to discover if there are any issues, things that could be improved or ways of working that need changing? It’s ok to try and implement a new process or new team structure and change things if it doesn’t work. That’s not a failure – that’s a success! You want to have an open door that allows employees to feel that they can speak to you. Without trialling things and learning from them, the team cannot grow, and neither can you.
If the environment isn’t quite ready for face-to-face communication, set-up a ‘tip-box’ and make your team aware of this. The anonymous tips should provide a good level of information for you to make improvements.
team socialising helps improve happiness at work
True teams aren’t necessarily built within the business walls only. The greatest teams often have a social aspect, utilising the power of social connections to build a strong bond between them. This is great for improving happiness at work. In fact, teams who socialise are two and a half times happier than teams who do not. Isn’t that worth fighting for?
Additionally, social events tend to improve and increase internal relationships between colleagues too. This results in improved collaboration between teams and individuals, whilst seeing a decrease in problems to solve.
show employees you value them
One of the reasons employees often cite when leaving a company is not feeling valued within their role. It’s often overlooked, but when employees are shown that they have a purpose and are valued by their business, happiness increases.
There are a lot of things you can do, using praise and recognition, that will improve employee morale. We recommend leaving some strategically placed post-it notes with positive messages around the office. Let your team know what they mean to you! This may be a little cheesy, but is a known tactic to help improve positive psychology and happiness at work.
Additionally, you should celebrate successes more often. It doesn’t always have to be a promotion that requires internal celebration either. As long as the work merits the praise it could be anything from a well-written communication to a stressful project delivered on time and budget by a specific PM and their team. These opportunities for celebration really reiterate the importance of the team to the wider business and help to grow workplace happiness.
Sometimes face-to-face celebrations may not work, especially with offices in multiple locations, so be creative and think of ways to communicate successes! An example here is a round-up email from the CEO to congratulate teams and individuals on their successes for the week. This positive word from the head of the business will really show value to the team and boost morale.
promoting collaborating improves workplace happiness
Collaboration in the workplace is a valuable commodity to quickly help promote happiness among your team.
When you have the chance to promote collaboration between teams and skillsets take it. By doing so, you provide people with the opportunity to learn and develop by working with others. By blending skillsets cross-training can take place and experiences blend to help team players coach and develop each other. This has a secondary positive impact by developing leadership and communication skills between members.
Additionally, this strategy will help grow working relationships between colleagues. As we work together, we learn more about our peers and grow fonder of them in the process. By building stronger working relationships, we know we can rely on our talent when times get tough, or a particular piece of work is proving to be rather tricky.
improve workspaces, improve happiness
We spend 90% of our time at our workspaces. Therefore, it’s extremely important these workspaces are as engaging as possible. Otherwise, workplace engagement can drop.
Dated décor, low-lighting, no plants or areas to relax contribute to unhappiness within workspaces. Can you afford to have the above impacting your efforts to grow happiness in your workplace?
In order to improve upon these, look to introduce the latest tech where you can. Employees love new mice, keyboards and hardware – however, this has a shelf life for impact. Remember, motivation 2.0 works for a limited time only, but not long-term. Don’t use this strategy as the sole source to grow workplace happiness.
Instead, add some plant life. Recent studies show that adding some plant life to your working environment can reduce anxiety by 37%, depression by 58% and anger by 44%. By reducing these negative emotions, we’re enhancing our chances for workplace happiness.
Additionally, make sure your workspaces are bright, using LED lighting to ensure there isn’t a doom and gloom atmosphere in the office.
Finally, here’s where the fun begins. We all know that big corporates like Google, Facebook and Amazon are investing heavily in providing fun working environments for their teams. Use them as inspiration for your workspace! We’re not suggesting a slide (unless it works for you), but a relaxing area for employees to zone out from work, have fun and be creative will help to improve their overall workplace happiness tenfold.