A happy workforce is a productive workforce. Employees who are happy tend to work better, stay at their jobs longer, and produce higher quality results than those that are unhappy at work. And the benefits don’t end there. High-performing employees lead to tangible benefits for their employers.
In fact, one study created a hypothetical portfolio of publicly-traded companies based on the Fortune “100 Best Companies to Work For” list and found that it substantially outperformed the market overall. And not just marginally. This portfolio of best companies provided nearly 3X the return than their counterparts. So whether you’re the one responsible for cultivating a happy workforce, or the one in charge of strengthening your bottom line — improving employee emotional well-being is an important goal to rally around.
Let’s take a look at how to re-energize your team and boost employee happiness.
Encouraging your employees to take regular breaks is crucial for maximizing productivity. Whether it’s walking to grab coffee from a nearby cafe or playing a round of ping-pong, focusing your energy on a different activity — even just for a few minutes — is a quick and easy way to recharge before diving back in. In fact, research shows the top 10% of productive employees tend to take breaks.
Company culture and perception can also play a large role in taking breaks. For example, it may be difficult for employees to pause and take a breather if their boss relentlessly powers through their work day. It’s for this reason that employees — at all levels — should take a few minutes to mentally detach from their work and restore the energy it takes to work more productively.
Take a moment and picture your office or worksite breakroom. Do you have one? If you do, maybe it doubles as a conference room one day and a training space the next. Regardless of what identity crisis your breakroom is going through, creating a designated place for recharging is important for both encouraging employees to take breaks and boosting morale as well.
Without breaking the bank, employers can take simple steps to improve their breakroom experience. For example, provide an on-site coffee bar, keep a well-stocked pantry with healthy snacks and beverages, arrange comfortable furniture to maximize socializing, or even add a little greenery to your space.
Most importantly, try to keep the breakroom void of work-related technology. Employees might have a hard time relaxing in a space that hosts a large monitor displaying the team’s monthly sales goals. Being reminded of work doesn’t relieve stress and employees won’t fully recharge or maximize the usefulness of a quick break.
Is stress hurting engagement? Or is complacency damaging your office culture? Developing a worksite wellness program is a step in the right direction when it comes to re-energizing your team. For many companies, employee wellness programs have even become a way to attract top talent.
According to The Mindfulness Center, “worksite wellness programs are a smart investment in the health and productivity of employees. Comprehensive worksite wellness programs have proven to lower health care and insurance costs, improve employee morale, decrease absenteeism, improve productivity and realize a positive return on investment.”
If you’re looking for a more budget-friendly route, there are many mobile apps and digital solutions that can provide frameworks in order to boost employee wellness, mindfulness and overall emotional health. Some of our favorites include FitBit Health Solutions for physical activity challenges, Headspace for meditation, or Bonusly for new ways to launch employee recognition and gratitude programs.
Last but not least, our surroundings can play a major role in our productivity. Set aside a fifteen minute block of time for your team to file away those papers that have been piling up, declutter their desks, throw away garbage, and wipe down their workstations.
And don’t forget virtual cleaning as well. Keeping shared drives organized, implementing tools that can automate repetitive work, and updating software provide the same benefits as physical organization. Dedicating some time to cleaning and organizing can help you work more energetically for the rest of the day.
Employee happiness can drive business outcomes. Giving your team the time and tools necessary to recharge and re-energize is an important factor in overall employee attraction, retention and engagement.