International Week of Happiness At Work

By Sharon Schweitzer

International Week of Happiness at Work is a week dedicated to making efforts to make the workplace a happy place. This week is aimed at raising awareness about the importance of being happy at work and how it affects each one of us. Happy employees play a big role in how well a company performs and its output. This is true regardless of whether you work for a boutique company, family business, or large conglomerate. With so much time spent at work, it’s essential to cultivate a happy office environment for yourself and those around you. According to the International Happiness at Work Week Site: “Happiness at work is about meaningful work, healthy relationships, development, and having fun. And about stopping unnecessary rules, power play, complicated processes and procedures, absenteeism, unmotivated colleagues, and terrible managers.”

It is no longer enough to offer a free gym membership and a fair wage. Employees want to feel excited about what they do, and they want to feel their contribution is making a real difference. An effective way to create this shift is to ask your staff what they want and need. Leaders can find themselves so caught up communicating with partners and stakeholders, that they forget to regularly communicate and check in with their staff.

So what are some of the benefits of a happy workplace? Increased productivity is one of them. Optimistic thoughts and feelings about the organization is another. Your employees will go the extra mile to help the company achieve its goals. Positive effects on mental health which results in less nonattendance. Engaged staff is another great benefit.. This means they’re invested in projects and tasks at work and willing to give time and energy to them – over and above mandatory.  As well as a happy workforce this will also result in a low staff turnover.

Creating a happy workplace is about allowing employees to exercise their rights and providing them with the mandated employee benefits. It is also about embracing diversity and equality. Whether it’s through organized activities, personal recognition or finding small ways to make your employees know they and what they do matters, just remember the goal is to make happiness at work the norm, not the exception.

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Sharon Schweitzer JD, is a diversity and inclusion consultant, cross-cultural trainer, etiquette expert, and the founder of Access to Culture. In addition to her accreditation in intercultural management from the HOFSTEDE Centre, she is an attorney and mediator. Sharon served as a Chinese Ceremonial Dining Etiquette Specialist in the documentary series Confucius was a Foodie, on Nat Geo People. Her Amazon #1 Best Selling book in International Business,  Access to Asia: Your Multicultural Business Guide, won a coveted Kirkus Star, and was named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books. She’s a winner of numerous awards, including the British Airways International Trade Award at the Greater Austin Business Awards.

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