Wood Words

Tips for Happier Employees in the New Year

It’s no big mystery: Happier employees are more productive, motivated and healthy.

What’s more, research from 24 Seven has shown that unsatisfied employees are 11 times more likely to leave their jobs within 12 months – which is significant, when you consider the costs of recruiting, hiring and training replacement workers.

With the holidays upon us, employee happiness might not be a top priority for your Middle TN organization. After all, this is traditionally the most wonderful time of the year! But what about after the New Year arrives? Once all the parties are over and the presents have been opened, the post-holiday winter blues may start creeping into your workplace. In addition, your best people may also re-evaluate their career satisfaction at the start of a new calendar year.

Clearly, taking employee happiness for granted poses real business risks. To protect yourself, develop a formal plan to assess and foster happiness in your organization. Keep these pointers from Wood Personnel in mind:

  • Start with a simple survey. Are your employees happy in their work? What frustrates them or makes them unhappy? What motivates them the most? What would make them feel more excited to come to work each day? Find out what really matters to your employees, and use their feedback to improve your retention, performance, engagement and motivation strategies.
  • Think beyond compensation. Bonuses and pay increases are common ways to keep employees happy. “Intangibles” such as finding value and meaning in the workplace, however, also play an important part in happiness on the job.
  • Instill a sense of purpose. How do your products or services improve customers’ lives? Are these points part of your company’s mission statement? If not, you may need to help your employees see their work in a new light. Work as a group to create a department or team mission statement – one that expresses how employees’ contributions make the world a better place. By simply clarifying employees’ impact, you help them find meaning and increase job satisfaction.
  • Create more fulfilling work relationships. People bring their whole selves – interests, personalities, goals and viewpoints – to work every day. Provide opportunities to socialize and build bonds in informal settings, to create deeper and more meaningful work relationships. Mentorship programs that pair experienced employees with new team members are another great way to foster fulfilling relationships at work – offering the mentor a sense of purpose, and the person mentored a sense of connection and value.
  • Recognize everyone’s contributions. Recognizing and rewarding employees for their accomplishments isn’t just good for the recipient – it also promotes wellbeing in those who give the recognition. Still, a recent study by CornerstoneOnDemand revealed that two-thirds of employees don’t receive enough feedback or recognition. Start the New Year by breathing new life into your recognition efforts. Work with your employees to create meaningful ways to recognize both individual and group achievements at every level within your organization.

Another great way to keep your employees happy? Provide the support they need. When things get busy, Wood Personnel can supply talented temporary employees to help ease the demand on your core staff – keeping them motivated, focused and productive on the job.