Happiness is a great benefit to many aspects of our lives, from our health through to our personal relationships. And, as research shows, the benefits of happiness can extend to our working lives, too.
A proven link
Research carried out by Oxford University in collaboration with BT revealed that employees were 13% more productive when they considered themselves to be happy. BT call centre staff were found to make more calls per hour, and even convert more calls into sales, too. The staff did not work any extra hours, so the results were entirely due to increased rates of productivity. This is clear evidence that the happiness of your team can make a direct impact on the success of your business, too.
Previous studies into happiness had found that work lay near to the bottom of the list of activities, which promoted happiness. This means that there is certainly scope for many businesses to make their workplace a more enjoyable place for staff, and reap the rewards of productivity in return.
Why are happy employees more productive?
Think of the happiest colleagues that you have experience of working with. Chances are, these people were also pretty good at their jobs. The happiest employees are enthusiastic about coming to work and getting stuck into their to-do list every day, and this makes them attractive to their bosses and even other members of staff, whose own work performances can improve thanks to their influence. By contrast, unhappy employees are usually poorly motivated to do a good job, and may demonstrate poor attention to detail or time-keeping. These members of staff rarely do more than the minimum efforts required by their job description.
Happy people care more
Those people who are happy at work usually care about the company they work for, and want it to do well. These are the employees that support the goals of their organisation, and actively help to meet these objectives. Happiness affects how employees relate to customers, too. Happy team members engage readily with customers, and want to give them a great experience. Customers naturally pick up on this genuine enthusiasm and interest, and this leads to the higher sales conversions seen by the study at BT.
Great customer service experience helps your brand in the long run too, as these satisfied customers are more likely to be loyal to your brand in future, and recommend it to others too. According to Gallup, these happier employees are more likely to be loyal to your company. So that means that once you’ve got these fantastic team members, you’re more likely to keep them. A reduced turnover of staff also makes for boosted productivity, as less time is spent on inducting or training new members of staff. Instead, everyone can just focus on the business.
Happiness means productivity
Ultimately, it’s the enthusiasm for doing their job that makes happy employees more productive. Happy members of staff take an interest in the systems and processes which they deal with, making themselves more proficient at completing tasks and therefore more productive as a result. These employees are likely to just get on with their workloads, using their initiative to get the job done. And, as mentioned earlier, one of the side-effects of happiness is better health. So, by having a happy workforce your enterprise will likely reap the benefits as fewer sick days will be taken, including those for debilitating mental health conditions such as depression.
Happy employees support their team mates and please their managers, meaning if you have happy staff, everyone benefits. And by building a reputation as an organisation with a positive working culture, you will be able to attract the best possible talent when it’s time to hire somebody new. Making happiness a priority for your business can help you more than you could ever have realised.