happy employees

15 Ways to Create a Happier Work Environment

Recognition, praise, appreciation, gratitude and flexibility: These are just a few ways to make your work force happier and more productive.

Happy employees are productive employees – and they also may be safer, record fewer absences, have fewer work-related conflicts and more likely to remain with the company. Making workers happy, therefore, could pay off in some big ways. Follow these 15 tips to keep your work force happy.

 “Happiness increases our levels of dopamine, which produces our learning abilities. It helps us learn better and more efficiently,” explained Diane Lang, psychotherapist, author and positive living speaker. She offers 15 ways to make the workplace happy for your employees:

  1. Appreciate your employees by recognizing their accomplishments with praise and appreciation.
  2. Don't wait for reviews or evaluations to praise your workers.
  3. Show employees you care by paying attention to their daily work and achievements.
  4. Show your appreciation when they are working particularly hard.
  5. You can never say “thank you” too often.
  6. Know your employees and coworkers by name.
  7. Be involved – say hello, ask them about their weekends, families, etc.
  8. Socialization is a key factor for happiness. The more fun and social your workplace is, the happier your employees will be.
  9. Don't micromanage your employees. It lowers motivation and the overall morale of the department.
  10. Free time can be even more important that money or raises. Motivate your employees by offering a paid day off or a more flexible schedule.
  11. Workers are happier when their basic needs are met, so support health and wellness initiatives at work.
  12. A healthy environment includes good lighting, plenty of natural sunlight, plants, plenty of fresh water, etc.
  13. Allow your workers to take shorts breaks where they can get up, stretch and take a break from the computer so they can refresh. This in turn will help improve their creativity and productivity.
  14. Encourage vacations. Workers will return happier, refreshed and motivated.
  15. Have weekly meetings to discuss good news. Most meetings go over what's missing or bad events – switch it up by holding meetings to share the positive news.

"Remember, moods and emotions are contagious, so be the happy boss!” Lang said. “You’re the role model and mentor. How you act is contagious.”

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