The quest for happiness has become a full-time job!

December 7, 2022 - In Our Minds

These days, happiness at work has become a major talking point. You can read about it in magazines and blogs; you can even attend conferences and be inspired by best practices for keeping your employees happy. We’re all seeking a 5-step manual so that we can keep our teams fully engaged. But with a recession (possibly) on the horizon, the ongoing labour shortage, the quiet quitters and other pressures on employers, leaders and “happiness makers” are as exhausted as their troops. At La tête chercheuse, we’ve come to the conclusion that this quest for happiness at work should be everyone’s responsibility. Happiness can be achieved when effort is put into achieving it. So, what if everyone shared this responsibility?

Employers, evidently, play a key role in keeping their employees happy. They can ensure that salaries and work conditions reflect that of the market and offer mandates that are stimulating and diverse. They can also ensure that the work climate and physical environment is welcoming, and strike a balance between supporting their teams while respecting their need for independence. The trend of “job crafting”, where we encourage employees to align their desires and motivations with their job so that they can grow and become empowered is a flexible framework that helps personalize the employee experience.

On the other hand, the best intentions and initiatives are worthless if an employee isn’t willing to pull their weight. We need to keep in mind that everyone has the power to:

  • Get involved in projects that interest them
  • Transform dissatisfaction into a driver for change
  • Become more self-aware
  • Adopt a positive attitude
  • Demonstrate a willingness to learn
  • Build connections with colleagues
  • Communicate expectations and preferences

We mustn’t lose sight of the fact, either, that employees seek their boss’s recognition for their work as well as that of their peers. It impacts people’s motivation, and a motivated employee has a greater chance of being a happy employee.

Working together

If we assume that engagement or the responsibility for being happy at work is shared and that each person can influence various facets of this, then how can we make it work? Employers, for their part, can conduct one-on-one meetings to get the pulse of employees’ satisfaction or even use digital tools to survey team members. As for employees, they must actively participate, but they must do so knowing that they will be listened to.

Trust is a crucial element that managers and employees both share; in additionally allows the latter to maintain some autonomy. This is also akin to the responsibility for happiness, which is a not a one-way street.

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