Following the writing of my opinion piece in August 2014 I have been inundated with requests to present the Happyology™ keynote and its ideas. So popular is it in fact, that I have had to rewrite the keynote making it more balanced between what is expected from a company / employer and the happy employee.
So, in this month’s newsletter Happyology™ (v 2.0) I simply wish to expand on some of the more practical ideas for creating not only a happy working environment, (which comes from a balance between corporate responsibility and personal involvement) and a happy bottom line full of profit & happy customers.
The secret to making massive profits can only truly be achieved with happy staff. It’s called the Happy Bottom Line™!
The latest research has shown that not only is it possible to make huge profits whilst having fun, it is very difficult to do it without having fun.
For too long we have been following the incorrect formula – the one that said “work hard, get results, and you will be happy”. This formula may have worked for a few, but most of us will attest to the fact that this is not true. The new formula is almost fool proof and begins with the premise that you have to be happy to start with, then you will want to work hard, you will get the results and you WILL be even happier!
BREAKING NEWS FOR ALL STAFF MEMBERS: Your company / bosses are not responsible for your happiness!
Nowhere on your appointment agreement / employment contract does it state that the company will make you happy. In fact during your interview you walked in
- very happy
- told us that you would bring happiness
- and competence to the position
- you told us you were hard working
- punctual and
- always did what you said you would do
- you said you were creative
- and would constantly look for solutions to things that were not working properly
In fact it is every employer’s wish that their future employee would in some way live up to the promises on their CV. A greater fictional document would be difficult to find (unless of course you compare it to political promises and manifestos). You made the promises so now it’s time to just live up to them.
Being happy is your responsibility!!
HOW TO BE HAPPY:
I am currently working on a book and have already identified well over 150 practical ideas to be happier as a person. Here are 4 quickies.
- To be happy as a person you have to take off your mask. Customers and companies are looking for real people. It is very difficult to be a real person if you are pretending to be what you are not. The greatest gift you can give someone else is to be yourself. We lose ¾ of our personalities trying to be like other people. It’s very difficult to hide what’s not really there.
- Do things differently. Create variety and fun in your life and do things that are not only different for you, but make a difference to the customer and your company.
- Take control of your finances, your health, your fitness and your personal life. When you are happy in these areas you will be a happier person who brings joy to the workplace and not all the failure, needs and issues of your personal life. Take control of your life now.
- If we had a “happiness audit” right now (we do during the keynote), would you be voted the happiest person in the company? The most positive? The nicest? Or as in the case of most conferences would you sit there and not have a single person call out your name? This is especially hard-hitting if you are indeed a manager, leader, owner or employer. It’s an uncomfortable truth.
BREAKING NEWS FOR COMPANY MANAGERS / OWNERS: your staff’s happiness may not be your responsibility but it is your problem!
That is such a powerful statement – I think you need to reread it. Really take it in, and present it at your next management meeting. It’s not your responsibility and it may not even be your fault but it is your problem. It’s a problem that is so grave that it is exactly where your company / department will end up, unless you get the basics correct.
Many years of research have gone into discovering what companies need to do in order to assist staff in being happier at work. Please notice that I use the word “assist” in being happier and not making them happy this you cannot do. A happy person is the person you should have employed in the first place. There are many more, but based on my research these are the top five.
THE TOP 5 CRITERIA FOR KEEPING STAFF HAPPY
- Pay them proportionately to their effort and skill + pay them on time. Money is very important and in a recent survey 61% of respondents said that they would leave their current company for more money. This makes money an important motivator but not the only one. Because money is so important it follows then that you should;
- Reward and recognize outstanding performers and have a reward and recognition program in place that is fair and consistent.
- Have a noble purpose for being in business that is the company culture. Put the noble purpose first in everything that you do and make sure that your purpose drives every task. The concept of Purpose over Task is paramount. “Why I am doing something will determine how I do it, when I do it and how well I do it”.
- Real leadership. Just as children need proper parenting and guidance interspersed with love and tough love, employees flourish when they are led by an actual leader. A leader who cares about them and the business, but is also firm and fair. Lead by example and put a flippen smile on your face! How come is it that the higher you climb in a corporation the more miserable you become?
- A career path and opportunity for growth. Dead-end jobs do not create a sense of happiness, inspiration or a positive future outlook. When the future looks bright and growth is possible – staff are happier.
MORE breaking news for all staff members: If you want to have a happy manager or boss, be a happy staff member AND if you want to have happy staff members then be a happy manager /boss!
If you want to work in a happy environment where you are paid, respected, recognized and get promoted all you have to do is;
- Do your bloody job – it really is that simple.
- Stop moaning and complaining – any idiot can moan and complain and it’s normally the idiots that do. Be proactive and fix it if you can, reported if you cannot, but just stop winging.
- Appreciate your job – unemployment is rife and growing, wake up to this fact and appreciate what you have.
- Get to work before time – no that’s not a mistake. Get to work before you are supposed to start working. Warm up, get the coffee and the “what I watched on TV last night” chat out of the way and start working on time. Smoke in your own time. Stick to tea breaks and exact lunchtime breaks. Top performers don’t take lunch. Lunch is for wimps and people who don’t want a promotion. Show me a successful entrepreneur / business owner / successful business person who bothers with lunch. If your manager doesn’t notice, then you’re working for the wrong guy.
- Don’t open or look at Facebook, Twitter, the internet or any other social media for the entire time you are at work. It’s called WORK because that’s what you’re supposed to be doing for a minimum of 8 hours every day. I bet during your interview you never said that you would be looking at social media and surf the net for a couple of hours a day. Stop that nonsense now!
- Be a person that can be trusted and who takes responsibility and ownership for his job – Dah!
- Just keep your promises in accordance with your employment contract.
- Take control of your personal finances and stop asking for increases because you spend too much and are out of control. We buy things we can’t afford to impress people we don’t like and who don’t like us. The cost of living goes up because people spend money they do not have – it’s called inflation. It is caused because people try and make their lives better by spending money they do not have and then complain that the cost of living is increasing. They then want their company to pay them more so they can go and buy more. It’s flippen madness!
- Do what you say you will do. This one sounds simple but read it again it will change your life.
- Never lie – “I will always find out”, I’m sure you learned that from your mother.
- Do your best and use your best judgment at all times knowing that you are fully accountable for any and all results, good or bad. For the good you will be acknowledged and for the bad you will be held accountable – taken outside and beaten. Okay maybe that’s a bit harsh, but the least you should have to do is pay for your mistake – in cash, off your salary. Oh where are the strong leaders when we need them?
- Always add more value – that’s how you get an increase, not by demanding, striking or being on a go-slow. The more you put in, the more value you add and the more you are rewarded, simple.
- Invest in yourself, your education and your skills in becoming a better person so the company can then invest more in you. Did you know that the average South African spends more money on toilet paper every month than on improving their mind?
- You are the brand – in fact, you are the company. So always act to the highest standard. Act as if a television camera is following you around all day, and you are going to be on tonight’s news.
- Grow up – put your big boy pants on (or your big girl dress) and leave your issues at home. This is a place of work not a psychiatric ward, and your manager has other uses for that couch in his office, it’s not for your psychotherapy.
- Bring as much fun, happiness and passion to work as you can – every day, and try to be the happiest employee in the company. As Robin Williams used to say, “don’t let the b4st4rds wear you down!”
It’s just that simple.
Have a happy month – it really is all up to you!