Focus on Making Your Staff Happy
People work best when they’re happy at work.
Hi, we are Happy
We are leading a movement to create happy, empowered and productive workplaces.
How can we help you and your people to find joy in at least 80% of your work?
That principle is the core of everything we do at Happy (a training business in London, UK). Think about whether you agree with it. If you do, and I find over 95% of people do, then what should be the key focus of management? By simple logic, it should clearly be creating an environment where people are happy and feel good about themselves.
When I speak at conferences, I like to ask the audience to raise their hands if that is the main focus of management in their organisation. Generally one or two in a hundred raise their hands. (I suspect I’d get a different response if I spoke at Zappos.) Yet there is strong evidence to suggest such a focus makes good business sense.
One restaurant chain in the UK carried out research some years ago to find out why sales at some of their restaurants grew faster than at others. They found one factor stood out in explaining the difference: how happy the staff said they were in the annual staff survey. For a time they even changed their managers’ bonuses so that 50% was based solely on those staff survey results.
They still wanted to maximise growth and profits, of course. However, they believed that the way to achieve that was not to target these elements but instead to target the key factor that creates growth and profits, namely how happy its staff were. They sent a clear message to their managers: ‘Your key focus should be on making your staff happy.’
This is backed up by hard academic evidence. Alex Edmans of the Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania analysed the result of investing in the companies listed in the Great Place to Work listings over the last 25 years. He found a difference, compared to the stock market, of 3.5% a year. An investment which would have returned $100,000 in a tracker fund would have achieved $236,000 from investing in companies that focus on creating great workplaces.
So how would your organisation be different if the main focus of management was making your staff happy?
Most people respond that it would not only be more enjoyable but it would be easier to get things done and would be more productive. So what can you do to make it happen?
Keep informed about happy workplaces
Sign up to Henry's monthly Happy Manifesto newsletter, full of tips and inspiration to help you to create a happy, engaged workplace.
Learn the 10 core principles to create a happy and productive workplace in Henry Stewart's book, The Happy Manifesto.
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Next Conference: 2024 Happy Workplaces Conference
Our Happy Workplaces Conference is our biggest event of the year, and we'd love for you to join us next year. Save the date for Wednesday 15th May 2024!
This will be a hybrid event — we will host up to 50 people in the venue at Happy's HQ in Aldgate, London, and up to 200 people online via Zoom. The speakers will be a mix of online and in person. However you choose to join us for 2024, there will be interaction, discussion, space for reflection and opportunities to network with others.
All tickets are currently half-price until January 2024.
Not what you need? Take a look at all of our Leadership and Management programmes.