Increase job happiness: Are your employees happy at work? Fun at work is a very un-Dutch expression. We are actually far too sober for that. The Dutch employee works because food has to be put on the table. You can do fun things in your free time. But since we work most of our time, it would be nice if the work also brought some form of happiness.
As a manager, happiness at work brings you many benefits. Employees who feel good about themselves and enjoy their work will be more happy to perform the work. But there are various factors that can stand in the way of job happiness. How can you increase the happiness of your employees as a manager?
Also read about: reducing absenteeism
What is work happiness?
Happiness at work is a modern term that you increasingly hear. The fact that there is even training for job happiness experts reveals how current this topic is. In fact, work happiness is based on two things. Being useful and/or sensible and having fun in what you do.
People feel better if they can do something for others or make themselves useful. If their work is also fun, then you can speak of job happiness.
Does the work make others happy? and in return, you feel joy. Then work happiness increases.
Professions like hairdressers, plumbers or florists generally score high when it comes to job happiness. These people spend the day making others happy. They receive immediate appreciation for their work and see the joy as a result of their efforts.
Working happiness is, therefore, more than just a fun job. It is work that satisfies. Work that is challenging enough and that gives positive social interaction.
Does the work give your employees energy and a positive contribution to their sense of happiness?
Read this article to understand how you can promote motivation at work whilst reducing absence in your company.
How great is the job happiness at your office?
An office full of employees who reluctantly come to work does not provide a pleasant atmosphere. They cannot wait until 5 o’clock to go home again. They count the days to the weekend and are not normally enthusiastic on Mondays.
Reluctantly going to work is a sin and un-necessary. How do you encourage and motivate employees? How do you ensure that they get satisfaction from their work?
It is possible that your employees experience too high a workload. Do they work long days and is the balance between work and private life far-fetched? Perhaps the company is in the middle of a reorganization and your employees are afraid of losing their job. They are already looking for another job in their heads. They shut themselves off from the fun things at work and only do what is necessary. Not a good starting point if you want to see more happiness in the workplace.
Also read: motivate employees
Which factors increase work happiness?
Working happiness depends on several factors that together determine the degree of happiness. People do not only become happy by doing something they enjoy. It must be something that gives them energy. Where they receive an appropriate amount of responsibility and can develop personally.
Your employees must get the feeling that their presence counts. That they are appreciated and that their contribution is seen as valuable within the company.
Another important factor for job happiness is the ability to grow within a job. No one feels a sense of happiness from being stuck in a job with no prospects. Give your employees the opportunity to grow within the company. Offer courses and ensure that the work remains challenging so that your employees keep renewing themselves.
Factors that increase work happiness:
- Get energy from work
- Appropriate responsibility
- Personal development
- Appreciate what they do
- Valuable addition within the company
- Growth opportunities
- Challenge in work
Also read: development points for employees to reduce absenteeism
Work pleasure prevents stress and unnecessary absenteeism.
Why is work happiness so important?
Employees who are not happy at work will not feel involved with the company. This does not benefit productivity, flexibility and creativity.
Research has shown that job happiness leads to less absenteeism, less stress, higher quality of service and therefore also higher customer satisfaction. All very good reasons to commit yourself to more work happiness at the office.
We spend most of our lives working. In contrast to the past, pleasure in our work is becoming increasingly important. Yet almost a quarter of the working population in the Netherlands is not happy at work.
There are 12 factors that together determine work happiness:
- The high degree of influence
How much influence your employee has on what his or her workday looks like contributes to work happiness. Some people have a high degree of autonomy. Allowing employees to determine the order of their work gives them a form of freedom that makes them happy.
- Use the strengths of your employees
A job in which your employee can show his or her qualities makes you happy. Therefore make sure that you know the strengths and weaknesses of each employee. Use the qualities of your employees. That way you not only increase productivity but also work happiness.
Read also about internal mobility
- Provide work challenges
A job in which only simple jobs need to be done quickly offers no challenge. Your employee will be annoyed and cannot wait until he or she can go home again. If only very difficult jobs are placed on the desk, the workload will become too high. Your employee cannot perform these jobs properly, which causes stress.
Challenging activities, which are experienced as moderately difficult, work best for the job happiness.
Using challenges you can helping employees to increase their personal effectiveness, find out how.
- Ensure variety in the activities
Doing the same thing all day long is boring, you can imagine that. Sufficient variety in the activities keeps your employees alert. Being able to alternate difficult tasks with easy tasks brings peace of mind in the day.
Make sure there is enough variety, but not too much either. Too much of having to jump on the branch causes unnecessary stress to your employees.
- Ensure clear communication
An employee who knows what is expected of him or her will enjoy going to work. Vague job descriptions entail uncertainty. This causes stress, your employee does not know what to do and there is a good chance that it will go wrong. Then it must work again. With that prospect, your employee will only do half the task.
By clearly communicating about the activities, your employee can get started with this and work it out to perfection.
Also read: having a conversation about stress with an employee
- Social contacts in the workplace
People remain herd animals. They feel most at ease in a group that they fit into. Sufficient, pleasant social contacts on the work floor contribute to work happiness.
A good atmosphere between colleagues reduces the workload.
Does each employee work on his or her own duties or does a team work together? The team feeling contributes to a positive working atmosphere. Even if you work individually, you can reinforce this team feeling as a supervisor by showing what your employees have achieved together.
You can also stimulate social interactions between colleagues with drinks and team-building outings outside working hours.
- A suitable salary
The work can only be so much fun, it must also include a suitable salary. Too low rewards cause employee dissatisfaction. But too high salaries stand in the way of a healthy flow within the company. A suitable salary ensures satisfaction with your employees and offers room to grow within the organization.
- Safe working environment
A working environment where your employees feel comfortable. And where everything is there, what they need to do their job well, it means greater job happiness. A workplace where trust and safety is paramount also means a workplace where people talk openly and honestly. Experienced employees with a too high workload, may be reported without comment. As a supervisor, you can immediately get started with this.
Also read: increase safety
- Appreciation for the work
As mentioned earlier, people feel better and happier if they can make others happy. Expressing your appreciation about the work of an employee is a small effort, but contributes to a great deal of work happiness. The extent to which the employee himself is satisfied with the work done also contributes to this. Therefore, give your employees tasks that they can complete well.
- A good manager
As a manager, you also contribute to the happiness of your employees. You have a great deal of control over how your employees behave in the office. Through clear communication and good listening, you can facilitate the employees and offer them everything they need.
There are various development points that you can work on as a supervisor to become a good boss.
Also read: work based on the output
- Growth opportunities
Being stuck in one place without career opportunities is a reason for many employees to look for another job. Personal growth is important to people. Offering courses, training and education ensure that your employees can grow within the company. These options ensure more job satisfaction.
- Fair treatment
Dutch employees have a great sense of justice. If changes are pushed through without consultation, the heels can go down. Fair treatment, involving employees in decisions and being kept informed of changes, ensures that employees are involved.
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What stands in the way of work happiness?
If all the above points are present in the office, your employees should experience job happiness. If a few are missing, it becomes more difficult. And then there is the personal attitude of your employees towards work.
If your employee sees his or her job as necessary, little work happiness will be experienced. It is very different when an employee sees his or her job as a way to grow personally.
Do you discover a negative attitude towards the work of one of your employees? Have an open and honest conversation with each other. How can you help this employee? More responsibility, training or other tasks? Allowing employees to look positively at their work creates a better atmosphere in the workplace.
Also read: How to increase work pleasure.
Working happiness is an investment
Stimulating work happiness among employees is an investment that is definitely worth your time. Motivated employees will deliver their work better and faster. And you benefit from it. If your employees feel at home and if they get the growth opportunities they need, the employee turnover is less. You get a close team that is passionate about the business.
Many employees spend 40 hours a week in the office. Then they can better get their work pleasure out of it.
You increase the happiness of your employees by investing time. Be genuinely interested in your employees. Know who someone is, what he or she wants to achieve, what they can do, what their strengths and weaknesses are and how you can use these qualities. Where do your employees really get their energy from?
Also read: increasing employee resilience
Tips for increasing the happiness of employees
The right attitude can increase the happiness of employees. As a manager, you have a lot of influence on the course of events in the workplace. With these tips, you encourage employees to grow their job happiness.
Happiness is a feeling. As long as employees look at something in an negative way, they will never be happy. Complaining about what is not going well is easy. Suggesting points for improvement works much better. If you notice that there is a lot of complaining in the workplace, ask for improvements.
Take this seriously, so that your employees see that you want to help them. This way you turn a negative attitude into something positive.
Make sure your employees see work as more than just a means to provide for their necessities of life. If they can get satisfaction from their work, they will be proud of themselves. More self-esteem and greater job happiness are the results.
Also read: Most common problems within companies
Give the right example
Being positive about work as a manager. Offer your employees a safe and trusted workplace, where they can make mistakes and where they can lose many or complaints. That gives your employees the space to be more themselves and to feel safe and secure in their workplace.
If an employee asks you something, do just a little more than what is requested. That not only gives you a good feeling but also your employee feels more appreciated.
Making mistakes can happen to anyone. Making mistakes is allowed, as long as it is solved properly. Therefore, make sure that your employees have no fear of making mistakes, as that can hinder their productivity. Do not compare employees with their colleagues, but look at individual work.
Setting a good example also means that you should not be a workaholic. Your employees need a good balance between work and private life. Show that you do that too. Some employees will feel obliged to work overtime because their supervisor does the same. The chance that the work will consume all their energy is high. With all its consequences. Employees who get enough rest will perform better and feel better at work.
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