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In pursuit of happiness - secrets to workplace success revealed

In pursuit of happiness - secrets to workplace success revealed

How do business really keep their employees' happy and their productivity levels at a high?

Date: Monday 14th March 2016

By Aisha Oakley, Head of Outsourcing

Workplace success may seem like a simple thing to achieve but over the last few months there has been a raft of articles written on employee engagement, how to motivate staff and how to retain them to create success for the business. 

The Outsourcing team at Bradfield even held a breakfast seminar at our offices a few weeks back to give business leaders and HR staff some handy tips and information on retaining and engaging their workforce to translate this into productivity and success for the business.  So as you can probably tell, this is a hot topic.

When most of us think of employee satisfaction, we tend to think of how well motivated and incentivised our staff are.  What springs to mind is the way in which we incentivise staff, quite often through additional benefits (healthcare, pensions, bonus, employee rewards, free breakfast, flexible working etc).  However, in fact a lot of companies overlook some of the simpler, but surprisingly, most effective ways of ensuring their staff feel appreciated.

Recent research by Google shows that you don’t have to ‘splash the cash’ to make your staff feel motivated towards the company.  In fact, four years of data has been analysed by the technology company revealing that an action as simple as a manager greeting a new employee on their first day, means that the new employee is likely to be up to 15% more productive in nine months’ time.*

Another study by Google also confirmed that expensive perks are the not the be-all and end-all to achieve long term success.  Successful teams were found to have “high average social sensitivity” meaning that they were good at gauging their colleagues’ expressions and tone of voice.  Being open and honest with each other also allowed employees to open up and form stronger ties with their colleagues. 

Based on the findings it is not difficult for SMEs to take on board some of this advice to ensure stronger, more cohesive and successful teams. Here are some quick tips outlining how to make your employees feel empowered and more productive:

  1. Say thank you – we all went to feel appreciated and feel like we are doing a good job.  A simple ‘thank you’ can go a long way.
  2. Be empathetic – take the time to find out about your employees’ likes and dislikes and what makes them tick.  Obviously there is a fine line here, but understanding some of their pain points can help them to feel supported and understood.
  3. Introduce new team members – make sure new recruits know who key personnel are and if you are the MD, be sure to take the time to introduce yourself and make them feel welcomed to the organisation.  They will appreciate that personal touch.

Ultimately happiness is the key to workplace productivity.  While the other perks and benefits are an essential foundation to the relationship between employer and employee, the real value comes when you can tap into what makes your colleagues/team tick and find out what is important to them.  This can go a long way in creating a happy workforce who work with you and not against you.

If you need some help embedding a culture of happiness into your organisation, our fully qualified and professional team of HR consultants can help with all aspects of HR working onsite with you to transform your organisation’s productivity.  Get in touch today by calling 0207 977 9200 or email 

* HR Grapevine Google reveals secret to workplace success -