Employee satisfaction, retention rates, staff happiness, work:life balance...so many buzzwords that I’m sure you hear on a regular basis. But what does it really mean to have happy employees, and why should you bother with the effort of ensuring their contentedness?
So why should you bother?
Well, for starters, according to clinical psychologist Dr. Noelle Nelson, happy staff more than triples return on equity & assets – yep, happy staff means more money. Dr. Nelson then goes on to explain how you can create a happy workforce, and she says it is as simple as finding out what is important to your employees and giving it to them.
It doesn’t take a genius to work out that unhappy employees are much more likely to leave. It’s more important than ever to keep existing employees happy. If you don’t, there is always another company down the road that will take them, and there’s always social media and online reviews that ex-employees quite often use to tell others of their experience in your organisation.
Then of course there’s the sick days. Happy employees are less likely to take days off sick. Sick days cost us, whether we can physically see the loss in productivity or if it’s more behind the scenes. We’re actually talking about job satisfaction here, and happier staff have greater satisfaction at work. If you aren’t satisfied, you’re more likely to stay home and in bed. Which costs the company.
And finally there’s the statistics. Supposedly, once an employee finds meaning in their work they are:
- 3 times more likely to stick around and not leave so soon
- Almost twice as more likely to be satisfied
- And nearly 1.5 times more likely to be fully engaged in their work, meaning less errors and less procrastination
We know the importance of keeping our staff happy here at Wheatley. We offer the usual stuff like flexible working, the ability to work from home, childcare vouchers and a pension scheme. Offering benefits beyond the basics is one way to keep employees happy. For example, our Christmas parties are always ones to remember (watch out for this year’s one, it’s set to be the best yet). But the one thing that we know keeps our employees happy is our quarterly activities – or ‘Happy Shiny Fun Time’ as we like to call it. Once a quarter, the company pays for every member of staff to do an activity of their choice...we’ve done all sorts, from Gliding to Spa days, from Paintballing to River Cruises.
It’s a perk of the job to be able to go and enjoy yourself a few times a year, with people you enjoy working with.
Over the last few weeks it’s become really apparent just how important employee happiness is to our company. Visitors have even started picking up on it. One of our customers who recently visited our office even reported back to our CEO on how focused and attentive to our work we are here in Bacton, but yet we maintain a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. This was even felt by a recent ISO auditor who was so pleased on his warm welcome and friendly reception from everyone he met on the day that he just had to tell some of our management team. I can’t imagine ISO auditors get warm receptions much of the time! Clearly the atmosphere here and our employee’s attitudes are something to be really proud of.
With external visitors positively commenting and knowing we’ve still got the majority of our very first employees with us today...we like to think we’re pretty good at keeping our staff happy! Twenty-six years is a long time to stick around afterall.