How to keep your staff productive and happy at work

How to keep your staff productive and happy at work

Do you believe that your employees are happy in their work? Well a recent study by TINYpulse might change your mind, because they found that only 22% of employees in the financial services industry are happy, with 78% either indifferent or unhappy. 

With all the benefits and flexible working hours in the industry, you would think that employees in the financial services industry would be happy in their work, but another study by the same company found that this isn’t so. In fact, it’s interpersonal relationships and a positive work culture that play a big role in the happiness of employees.  

Whilst benefits, flexi time and wages do influence employees, these do not appear to have the same positive influence on employees as a feeling of being appreciated in the workplace. The problem is that this report also determined that worker recognition is becoming worse with only 25% of employees feeling valued in the work place. 

All of this begs the question – why does the happiness of our employees matter? Well, a recent study at the University of Warwick found that when workers feel happy their productivity increases by 12%, regardless of their initial productivity levels. So making a highly productive worker happy will make them even more productive!

So what can managers do to make their employees happy at work?

It’s fair to say that happy employees can foster a positive workplace culture, so if we take this one step further, we could say that improving the happiness of employees creates a feedback loop, perpetuating a positive culture within the workplace, which makes people happier, and so on. 

If you are interested in creating a better working environment for your employees and increasing their happiness at work, here are four strategies you need to consider.

1. Give praise when it’s due 

When an employee has performed well, don’t ignore this accomplishment, instead actively praise their efforts. When employees feel proud of what they have achieved, it gives them an incentive to work even harder, because they realise that what they are doing is important. So give recognition where it’s due.

2. Don’t stint on career development opportunities

Career development, upskilling and education are important considerations for employees. In fact a LinkedIn study found that more than 90% of employees indicated that this factor alone influenced their decision to remain with a company. Whether it’s leadership skills, retraining or upgrading, actively encouraging the growth of employees leads to a more positive work environment.

3. Invest in a positive workplace culture 

You do this by supporting the physical and mental health of your employees and encouraging workplace friendships. Installing a gym on-site or encouraging physical activities during the lunch hour (Pilates, yoga or meditation come to mind), adding games to communal break areas or meeting up for lunch or a weekly dinner are all ways to promote the health of your employees.

4. Ask for feedback

An anonymous survey or simply a suggestion box are two effective strategies that can be extremely valuable in showing your employees that you care about their welfare at work.  Actively supporting the happiness, health and satisfaction of your employees is a strategy that will have significant impact on the productivity of your company. The first step is to listen to your employees!


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The information provided is to be regarded as general advice. Whilst we may have collected risk information, your personal objectives, needs or financial situations were not taken into account when preparing this information. We recommend that you consider the suitability of this general advice, in respect of your objectives, financial situation and needs before acting on it. You should obtain and consider the relevant product disclosure statement before making any decision to purchase this financial product.

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Workers’ Compensation

While some occupations and industries have a higher risk of workplace incidents and/or fatalities than others, Workers’ Compensation is compulsory for all Australian employers. It provides financial compensation to workers if they suffer a work-related injury or illness.

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