Happiness in the workplace
Happiness in the workplace
Post written by Paragon Interiors   February 14, 2019

A happy workforce is a productive workforce. Plain and simple.

It’s not just about the money as many employers might assume. Nor is it about the success of the business. “Yay!” they may cry, “I work for a blue-chip company that is one of the top performers on the JSE” while they reach for their stress ball and trawl the internet for another job.

Business success is largely attributed to a happy workforce. It’s about people squirreling away because they feel valued and trusted in an industrious, ordered and caring environment.

When Yale University introduced the course ‘Psychology and the Good life’, the sign up far exceeded their expectations. The students were eager to explore the science of wellbeing and wanted to learn how to identify what makes them happy and how to put the necessary strategies in place. The response to the course also highlighted the impact that professional demands can have on social connectedness and life satisfaction. Human beings desire quality, balanced and fulfilling lives.

Let’s look at work-life balance. The introduction and rapid evolution of digital and telecommunications technology is seriously challenging work-life because mobile devices enable access to work-related issues in non-working hours. This has the potential to breed unhappiness when it affects workers’ personal and family lives and places them at risk of burnout.

That said, there is also an upside to technology. It supports autonomy in the workplace and gives workers the freedom to choose flexible working hours and place of work. A mother with a sick child can just as easily work from home. Or, if one is working on a complex project that requires focus and concentration, one can work away from the office. We’re seriously in favour of an outdoor office area for creative and meditative purposes, especially if it’s a quiet area flush with plants, natural light and fresh air.

Apart from helping workers balance work and private activities, autonomy has intrinsic value. It promotes dignity and morality in which accountability is the tacit expectation. Micro-management begets boredom and stagnation, weakens self-esteem and creates anxiety, depression and a sense of alienation. Autonomy gives workers the opportunity to thrive on a challenge because it offers skill variety, significance and leads to feedback. The knock-on effect of autonomy is higher job performance, satisfaction and enhanced general well-being.

The organisational culture of any business is crucial to employee fit. There are important elements that affect the culture, chief of which is how people are treated by bosses and peers. A person is more likely to feel comfortable when his/her unique abilities, preferences, behaviour and beliefs resonate with the company culture. The sense of connectedness promotes cohesiveness and reduces absenteeism.

Job security ranks as a critical factor. Salary is linked to both sustenance and privilege. Studies show that a higher level of job security = a higher level of satisfaction = a higher level of well-being. It would be unreasonable to expect an employee to function optimally when he/she feels that their job may be on the line.

Gaining knowledge and career development are linked to job security. Whilst career development and the possibility of promotion increases motivation levels, it’s not just about moving upward. Skills development within the business mitigates the prospect of obsolescence and provides greater scope for career opportunities

Lastly, praise and recognition. Good leaders always acknowledge the collective effort of the team and shares the accolades. When every employee understands their role in the success of the business, it fuels a sense of purpose. The best kind of recognition lies in meaningful perks like health and wellness programmes, child care or education subsidies to attend relevant classes, courses and conferences. Any investment in an employee’s personal and professional growth is the way to go.

We can help you up the “Yay, I love my job!” amp by introducing design elements highly conducive to a happy, relevant and functional workplace. Please feel free to call us for the ‘how’!

Call Paragon Interiors on +27 011 7065123 or email us at info@paragon-interiors.co.za or view our website at www.paragon-interiors.co.za