Turns out, happiness is more contagious than we thought. According to several studies, people you don’t even know can have a significant effect on your overall happiness because happiness spreads over two or three degrees of separation. That means you’re helping your own friends, as well as your friends’ friends!
Keeping this in mind, it’s important to establish a culture of happiness at work. This not only fosters happiness all around, but increases productivity and decreases employee turnover. Here are five ways to foster healthy habits for a happier workplace:
1. Hire happy people.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but hiring people who are excited about work can have an enormous effect on the whole staff. Employee satisfaction is invaluable to a company’s survival.
2. Foster communication.
Creating an environment of open communication is very important in cultivating mutual esteem and well-being. Here are some things you can encourage to achieve better communication:
· Say “Hi!” As small as this gesture is, encouraging employees to say “hi” to each other can go a long way. Socializing makes people happier, and this starts with small greetings.
· Learn to listen. Letting employees know that you value their opinion will create mutual respect and happiness in the workplace.
· Respect. Cultivate an atmosphere of respect among all employees. When people feel respected at work, they will be more motivated and free to share new ideas.
3. Create a team-oriented atmosphere.
Cultivating a team atmosphere allows for more collaborative efforts. By fostering teamwork, you’re helping everyone in the workplace feel better! Here are some ways you can encourage teamwork.
· Be willing to pitch in. If you notice someone needs help, offer to do what you can!
· Promote synergy. Combined efforts produce a greater sum than the individual contributions. Great ideas multiply in a group.
· Set group goals. Group goals help everyone work together and give the entire group direction.
4. Offer a great work environment.
The comfort and look of the office can have an enormous effect on the happiness of all employees. Cramped, ill-lit, poorly heated or cooled offices can detract from employee happiness and actually decrease productivity.
5. Motivate intrinsically.
Although both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation have their uses, intrinsic motivation can have the biggest effect on productivity and happiness. If you focus on praise, your employees will not only feel more at ease in the workplace but will motivate themselves– and feel better after being productive. Here are some ways you can motivate your people intrinsically:
· Breaking the routine. Letting your employees take a break. Sometimes we need to step away to keep employees motivated. A quick walk or game can relieve stress and let you change up the daily routine!
· Use positive reinforcement. Recognizing employees for good work fosters mutual trust and respect.
· Offer incentives. A friendly competition or a small bonus will allow employees to feel rewarded for their efforts and can create more teamwork if you’re rewarding team efforts.
Focusing on a happy work environment will not only increase productivity, but make work a better place for everyone. Since adults spend most of their time at work, you’ll be making them happier, which they’ll take home to their families! Remember, all it takes is one person to get it all started! Focus on your own health and well-being, and your feelings of positivity will affect others for the better.
Check out this infographic that digs deeper on how you can be happy and healthier in your personal life and at work.
Mark Kirkpatrick is a blogger and tech enthusiast in Los Angeles, California. He has found that productivity starts with healthy habits and hopes to help others achieve their goals through positive reinforcement.