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5 Ways to Make Your Employees Happier

5 Ways to Make Your Employees Happier

Many businesses operate under the assumption that employees want to be paid more. And while pay raises and bonuses are important aspects of employee retention, there’s ultimately one thing that matters more: happiness. Not sure where to start when it comes to employee happiness? Here are five strategies that generally work:

1. Gather and Listen to Feedback

Employees just want to be heard. They want to know that their opinions matter and that they are respected and cherished members of the organization. Sadly, a lot of business leaders make decisions independent of their employees. This drives a wedge between the employer and employees and causes frustration.

One of the best things you can do is simply listen to your employees. Even if you make a decision that’s different than the one they want you to make, the mere fact that you listen says a lot about where your priorities are. An open door policy, along with opportunities for anonymous feedback, goes a long way towards improving communication and elevating satisfaction.

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2. Remove Points of Friction

Every business has little friction points that frustrate employees. They’re often small problems, but when they have to be dealt with on a day-in and day-out basis, they become really annoying.

Take the outdated process of manual time tracking as an example. “Asking employees to manually track their hours is a recipe for disaster—it often leads to over or underpaying, which in turn opens the business up to future FLSA lawsuits,” says Jay Schofield of System ID.[1]

Other examples, while seemingly frivolous, include messy break rooms, low-quality office equipment, stringent clock-in and clock-out procedures, and slow internet connections.

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3. Offer More Time Off

How many days off do your employees get each year? Chances are, it’s probably not enough. American companies, on average, grant just 10 days per year to employees.[2] For perspective, French employees get at least five weeks off each year. While you don’t have to follow the French, you can and probably should give your employees a few more days off. Chances are, the increased job satisfaction will actually enhance productivity more than anything.

4. Encourage Flexible Work Scheduling

Researcher Dan Schawbel has spent a lot of time studying employee satisfaction and how workplace procedures impact it. He and his team recently completed an in-depth study on the topic and found some interesting results. Specifically, they discovered that employees don’t want more money – they actually want better work-life balance.

“In the study, we found that 35 percent of employees want more flexible schedules and 46 percent of employees say that flexibility is the most important aspect when looking for a new job,” Schawbel notes.[3] This begs the question, how can you encourage a more flexible schedule for your employees?

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5. Treat Employees Like Adults

At the end of the day, employees don’t want to feel like they’re sitting in a ninth grade classroom. They crave respect and independence. The best way to make employees happy is by giving them the autonomy they desire.

If an employee’s child gets sick at 3 p.m. on a Friday afternoon and needs to run and pick them up, that employee shouldn’t feel like he or she has to walk on eggshells. If a salesperson needs to grab lunch with a client, he or she shouldn’t have to go through a lengthy approval process in order to be granted permission. You get the picture.

Happiness is the Key to Job Satisfaction

Organizations claim that they prioritize employee happiness, yet few companies ever take tangible steps towards actually making sure employees enjoy their work. They either attempt to quell employees with occasional bonuses or ignore their feelings altogether.

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Unfortunately, neither of these techniques work. What you need to do is identify things that matter to your employees and look for opportunities to enhance them. Only then can you enjoy a fully satisfied workforce that’s productive and engaged.

Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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Anna Johansson

Anna specializes in entrepreneurship, technology, and social media trends.

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Last Updated on September 23, 2020

Do What You Love and Love What You Do to Achieve More

Do What You Love and Love What You Do to Achieve More

Are you waking up each day looking for that perfect thing, activity, or job that will make your life work? Or, maybe you are looking for that perfect relationship. Once you “get” this new thing that will allow you to do what you love, you are sure that you will be happy forever.

In reality, life doesn’t work like that, and we would probably get bored if it did. There is likely no one thing, experience, or activity that will keep you feeling passionate and engaged all the time. What’s important is staying connected to what you love and continuing to grow in the process.

Here, we’ll talk about how to get started doing what you love and achieving more in life through the motivation it brings. Doing this doesn’t have to take a long time; it just takes determination and energy.

Most People Already Know Their Passion

So many people walk around in life “looking for” their passion. They look for it as if true passion is some mysterious thing that is difficult to find and runs away once you find it. However, the problem is rarely lack of passion.

Most of us already know what we love to do. We know what excites us, even if we haven’t done it for years. Instead, we focus on what we think we “must” do.

For example, maybe you love building model cars or painting pet portraits. Yet, each day you work a completely unrelated job and make no time for the activity you already know you love. The truth is you probably don’t need to find your passion; you just need to start doing what you already know you’re passionate about[1].

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No Activity Is Exciting All the Time

Even people who are living their dream lifestyle or working their dream job don’t love it all the time. Every job or lifestyle has parts of it that we won’t like.

Let’s say your dream is to become an actress, and you succeed. You may not enjoy the process of auditioning and facing rejection. You may experience moments of boredom when you practice your lines over and over again. But the overall experience is totally worth it.

Most of life is like that. Don’t set yourself up for disappointment by demanding that life be perfect all the time. If things were perfect and easy, you would ultimately stop learning and growing, and life would begin to lack even more meaning in that case.

Be grateful for both the good and bad moments as they are both entirely necessary if you genuinely want to do what you love and love what you do.

Doing What You Love May Not Be Easy

Living a life you love is unlikely to be easy. If it was, you would not grow very much as a person. And, if you think about a great book or movie, the growth of the main character is what matters most.

What if the challenges you meet along your path to living a life you love were designed to make you grow as a person? You may actually start looking forward to challenges instead of dreading them. An easy life hardly ever makes a compelling story.

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If you struggle to overcome challenges, try writing them down each time you encounter one. Then, write down three ways you could tackle it. Try one, and if it doesn’t work, try another. This way, you’ll learn what does and doesn’t work for you.

How to Do What You Love

There are many small steps you can take to ensure you are making time to do the things you love. Start with these, and you’ll likely find that you’re already on the right track.

1. Choose Your Priorities Wisely

Many people claim they want to do something, yet they don’t do it. The truth is they might not really want to do it in the first place[2].

We all end up following through on what matters most to us. We make decisions moment by moment about what we need to focus on. What we choose to do is what we deem most important in our lives.

If there is something you claim you want to do but you don’t do it, try asking yourself how much you really want it or where it’s currently placed on priority list. Are there other things you want more?

Be honest with yourself: what you currently do each day is a reflection of your priorities. Recognize that you can change your priorities at any time.

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Make a list of your priorities. Really take the time to think this through. Then, ask yourself if what you are doing each day reflects them. For example, if you believe your top priority is spending more time with your family, but you consistently take on extra hours at work, you’re not really prioritizing things in the way you think you are.

If this is happening, it’s time to make a change.

2. Do One Small Thing Each Day

As stated above, doing what you love doesn’t have to mean finding that perfect job that makes you want to jump out of bed in the morning. If you want to do what you love, start with one small thing each day.

Maybe you love reading a good book. Take ten minutes before bed to read.

Maybe you love swimming. Get a membership at the local YMCA, and go there for thirty minutes after work each day.

Dedicating even a short amount of time to something that brings you joy each day will improve your life overall. You may find that, over time, a career path related to what you love to do pops up. After doing the thing you love each day, you’ll be more than prepared to take it on when the opportunity arises.

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If you need help making time for your passions, check out this article to get started.

3. Prepare to Make Sacrifices

If you are an exceptionally busy person (aren’t we all?), you may have to make sacrifices in order to make space for the things you are passionate about. Maybe you take on less extra hours at the office or take thirty minutes away from another hobby in order to develop another that you enjoy.

Looking at your priority list will help you decide what can get put on the back burner and what can’t. Remember, do this thinking about what will help you feel good about how you’re spending your time. 

For example, if you love writing but rarely make time for it, consider getting up 30 minutes earlier than normal. Or instead of browsing your phone for 30 minutes before bed, you can write instead. There is always a way to find time for what you love.

Final Thoughts

If you love what you do, each day becomes a joyful adventure. If you don’t love what you are doing, life feels like a chore. The best way to achieve success is to design a life you love and live it every day.

Remember, doing something you love doesn’t have to include big gestures or time-consuming projects. Start small and grow from there.

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Featured photo credit: William Recinos via unsplash.com

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