By Michele Connolly

Happy employees: good for staff; good for business

Business Benefits of Happiness
Research has found happiness to be associated with all kinds of benefits, including:

  • Enjoying physical health
  • Enjoying mental health
  • Having better coping skills
  • Being more resilient
  • Feeling satisfied at work
  • Having good relationships with colleagues, friends and loved ones
  • Living a long life
  • Having immune system strength
  • Self liking
  • Being more altruistic
  • Liking others
  • Being better at managing conflict

Of course, these findings are generalised across people – for some the effects are small or non-existent, for others they’re significant.

In general, though, simply being happy is likely to have advantages both for the people themselves and for the people they work with.

The only factors that bring long-term happiness improvement

The dominant theory of happiness in the psychological literature is based on 3 factors:

  1. Circumstances and demographics – like health, finances and marital status
  2. Personality and genes – the ‘innate’ aspects of a person
  3. Intentional factors – deliberate actions like pursuing a goal

These 3 factors vary in how much, and for how long, they can change a person’s level of happiness.

  1. Overall circumstances at a given time make a pretty small contribution to happiness (about 10%). What’s more, changing circumstances leads at best to a short-term change, because people quickly adjust to new conditions (a phenomenon known as the ‘hedonic treadmill’).
  2. Personality and genes make a big difference to happiness (about 50%), but aren’t amenable to change.
  3. Intentional factors make a sizeable contribution to happiness (about 40%) and are able to be controlled and changed by the individual.

Intentional factors might include:

  • Cognitive activities – like counting blessings, noticing good things, feeling gratitude
  • Behavioural activities – like exercising regularly or engaging in a hobby
  • Volitional activities – like striving for a goal or working on a skill.

There’s also evidence that these intentional factors can become a habit over time, giving them even greater happiness-producing benefits.

Life & Goal Organizer helps employees to organise and action intentional factors across 12 key life areas

Life & Goal Organizer leads people systematically through organizing, setting goals and taking action in 12 life areas:

  1. Personal Development
  2. Health & Fitness
  3. Career & Work
  4. Fun & Recreation
  5. Managing Technology
  6. Home
  7. Personal Presentation
  8. Strategies for Happiness
  9. Money & Finance
  10. Relationships
  11. Time Management
  12. Family

These 12 interactive modules can be made available all at once or via a meted out program with supporting emails as well as audio and video resources.

The process of using Life & Goal Organizer can also forge a bond between staff if they share their gains and challenges and support one another’s progress (an online forum is available to facilitate this).
Happiness isn’t just an end in itself; it’s also a means to being, doing, and giving more.

Life & Goal Organizer can provide the ideal structure to help staff pursue intentional factors – the only pathway to long-term happiness improvement.

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