That work determines happiness is in itself no longer a surprise. Of course, there is more to happiness than just work, but work does play a large role. Work gives meaning, creates social contacts and encourages development. All factors that are closely linked to happiness.
But the reverse is also true. Someone who is happy works better – in other words, happiness boosts performance. Happy and engaged employees work better together, as a result of which the quality of their work goes up. This in turn leads to satisfied customers and thus better business results.
There is even scientific support that happy employees contribute more effectively to hard business results. Ehero, an initiative of Erasmus University, conducted research into the effects of happiness from an economic, corporate and philosophical perspective, and confirms the above theory. The Wall Street Journal and the iOpener Institute have also published figures on happiness and performance. Apparently, happy employees are 85% more efficient at work and have 50% stronger sense of getting things done.
How to build a happy workforce?
A happy workforce starts with a great and fun work environment. An environment where employees trust their employer, are proud of what they are doing, are happy working together and have room for pleasure. The key to creating such an environment is knowing what you do well and therefore need to nurture, and knowing what you can improve upon. This is quite simply done by actively listening to all those concerned. At ORMIT, we regularly ask our stakeholders what they think of ORMIT. We ask our employees what they think we do well and what they think we could do better. Anything can and may be said. We also get valuable input from our ORMIT alumni. Of course, we also listen particularly well to our clients. We even have an Advisory Board made up of Executives and Management Board members from our participating companies. We take all this advice on board – and that is how we constantly improve.
Besides a great work environment, personal leadership is key. Personal leadership is all about self-awareness, conscious living and making choices. Each person possesses unique talents. Talent is not just a specific skill; it is also about being the right person in the right place at the right time. This requires self-awareness of who you are, what your qualities and your pitfalls are and what motivates you. It is also the ability to learn and the guts to make choices, such as what do I need, what do I want, what does the other person want and how can I make the difference? This self-awareness and making deliberate choices contributes to the satisfaction, engagement and commitment of employees.
Each year ORMIT takes part in various employee satisfaction studies and often obtains good results. I am proud to work for a company that finished in fourth place in the ‘Great Place to Work’ survey 2014, and can count itself among the top 10 best employers in Belgium. This proves that we practice what we preach !