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What Does Workplace Happiness Really Mean and How Does it Benefit Your Workplace?

Updated: Apr 2, 2023

What Is Workplace Happiness?

Workplace happiness is a term used to describe the happiness and wellbeing felt by

employees in their work environment. This can be a result of many factors, such as the work

environment, the people they work with, and how they feel about their job. Happy

employees feel good about the work they do and can see how this links to the wider

achievements of their organisation. Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage,

believes that happy employees are more productive and that workplace happiness is a key

factor in business success.

There are many factors that contribute to workplace happiness, including psychological

safety, a good work-life balance, and feeling like you're part of a community. When these

things are present, people are happier at work and the workplace is a better place for


Why is employee happiness good for business?

The workplace is where we spend the majority of our waking hours, so it's important that

we're happy there. Happy employees are undoubtedly good for business. Employee

happiness has been shown to boost employee engagement and productivity, while also

improving company culture and the workspace. A happy employee is more likely to be

engaged with their work and committed to their company, which leads to a more

productive workplace.

Workplace happiness matters because when employees are happy at work, they are more

productive and more likely to build positive relationships with their co-workers. There is a

strong link between happiness and productivity in the workplace. A study by Shawn Achor,

a happiness researcher, found that happy people are 31% more productive than their

unhappy counterparts. The reason for this is that happy people are better at problem-

solving and are more resilient when faced with setbacks.

A happy workplace is a more balanced workplace, which leads to better work-life balance

for employees and higher retention rates.

A happy workplace is also a more productive one. One study found that employees who

reported high levels of happiness were 12% more productive than those who were

unhappy. Furthermore, happy employees take fewer sick days and report feeling more

engaged with their work.

Strengthen your employer brand by focusing on workplace happiness and


Today's workplace is more demanding than ever before. To attract and retain the best

talent, employers need to focus on workplace wellbeing. This means creating a healthy and

supportive environment where employees can thrive.

There are many ways to improve workplace wellbeing, from providing ergonomic furniture

to offering wellness programs. One of the most crucial aspects however is to ensure

managers have the training and resources to effectively engage with their team members.

It's not enough to just have an open door policy, the relationship between a jobholder and

their manager is key to the health and effectiveness of an organisation.

Managers need to really get to know their staff and what values they hold, set clear objectives, lookout for employees welfare and make everyone feel part of the team. Managers also need to engage with employees through regular, honest, thoughtful and constructive feedback, give praise where deserved and tackle dysfunctional behaviour early on. Feeling appreciated by one's

boss or colleagues can go a long way toward making someone happy at work.

Work-life balance is also important for happiness in the workplace, encourage employees to

indulge in their passions outside of work and create opportunities for them to socialise with

their colleagues. You should also make sure your employees feel like they're doing

meaningful work and that their daily tasks are engaging. When we are happy at work, we

are more likely to be happy in our personal lives as well.

In sum, it is the combination of many small factors that can create a positive and happy

work environment for employees. By taking steps to support employee health and well-

being, employers can create a more positive work environment and strengthen their

employer brand.

Can We Measure Happiness in the Workplace?

Yes, we can measure happiness in the workplace. This can be done through surveys and

other research methods. Whilst there is plenty of research highlighting that workplace happiness has been shown to increase job satisfaction and productivity, most business leaders are highly results oriented and data driven and find it hard to value things they can’t put a number on. Tracking employee happiness with hard numbers can support recommendation's for change and gain organisational commitment to happiness initiatives.

A great tool I have recently discovered to measure employee's happiness on a regular basis is the Happiness KPI through, founded by Nic Marks, an award-winning statistician and TED speaker. Nic has measured population happiness and wellbeing for over 25 years and has created a focused, effective methodology for improving employee experience. Combining psychometrically tested questions, smart algorithms and expert consultancy, Friday Pulse gives teams and senior leaders real-time insights and a clear measure of their employees


What I particularly like about this is that it measures happiness on a weekly basis so the data is much more valuable than an annual survey which only gives you a snapshot in time. Better still is that the software is offered free for teams of up to 11 employees.

For an exclusive discount for Friday Pulse or If you'd like to discuss how we can help you to improve happiness within your organisation please contact

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