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What Makes a Happy Company?

Six key questions

What Makes a Happy Company?

Six key questions

What makes a happy company? There is a growing body of evidence that a happy person performs better and is more successful in the workplace.

Whilst the evidence may not yet be conclusive, surely it is better to be happy at work than not? A number of surveys have pointed toward what’s needed for employees to feel engaged in an organisation. Interestingly, this often revolves around recognising the value of a good manager.

Then there is recent research from the field of positive psychology which is increasingly suggesting the importance of being happy at work and linking happiness to better performance. For managers and for organisations, it is definitely worthwhile finding ways to be happy at work.

What makes a happy company?

We have summarised some of the main ideas from the emerging evidence into 6 questions. We think these are are central to answering the question: “what makes a happy company?”

1 Do you encourage people to get better at what they are already good at?

2 To what extent do people identify with what the organisation is doing and feel their work is meaningful and of value?

3 Do you build strong supportive relationships, and see friendship develop?

4 How are people encouraged and is good work acknowledged and rewarded?

5 Is how people behave as important as their role, title or achievements?

6 Does the environment encourage civil healthy working relationships?

Is This a Happy Company?

Is this a happy company?You’ll notice that the obvious question “are people happy at work?” isn’t one of the six. That’s because the answer to that question is either a prompt or a conclusion. If the answer is yes, then you probably don’t need to answer the other six. If the answer is no, then use our questions as a diagnostic tool or as a road map for improvement. Our six questions are intended to suggest what should be in place if your people aren’t happy at work.

So the question you’re probably trying to answer is: is this a happy company? If the answer is no, then what needs to be done? Take some time to think through each of the questions and the implications for you and your organisation. Everybody has a part to play in building a happy company, but managers more than others have the potential to make it happen, to make a difference.

Perhaps for all of us then the place to start is with ourselves? For example in our article: The Value Of A Good Manager: People Leave Managers Not Companies we suggested some clear advice on becoming a manager people want to work for.

What can a manager do? Fostering well-being at work is a noble and worthwhile idea in itself, but is happiness good for business? In our article: creating a happy workplace we look at how one business leader argues from his own experience about the impact of poor management, and why happiness makes business sense.

Workplace well-being resources

Workplace Well-being e-guides

For more resources on this topic, take a look at our great-value guides. These include some excellent tools to help your personal development plan. The best-value approach is to buy our Workplace Well-being bundle, available from the store.

We’ve bundled together these five e-guides at half the normal price! Read the guides in this order, and use the tools in each, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving your personal development plan. (6 pdf guides, 138 pages, 24 tools, for half price!)

Have a Good Workday (16 pages, 4 tools)
How to be a Happy Manager (15 tips with action checklists)
Workstyle, Lifestyle (31 pages, 5 tools)
Managers Make the Difference (27 pages, 5 tools)
Managing from Strength to Strength (22 pages, 5 tools)
Making Change Personal (22 pages, 5 tools)


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