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How to Encourage Health and Happiness in a Small Business

Small Business

In today’s world where work plays a very large part of most people’s lives, it is important that people get as much satisfaction from it as possible – this is less about doing a good job at work, and more about maximising one’s happiness and health while at work, because this will result in better performance, and more satisfaction in one’s job.

There is a lot of evidence to suggest that happiness is good for business; employees that feel happy will get more work done, the quality of their work will be above average, and they will engage with the company culture more. It is important for everyone in the business, on every level, to prioritise health and happiness in the workplace, whether it be physical or virtual.

Some research has indicated that happiness in the world place can improve business decision making, reduce health costs, and reduce employee turnover. All of this together shows that a happy, healthy workplace is synonymous with an efficient and successful business. There are lots of businesses that are taking this to heart; TechQuarters, for example, have taken lots of steps since the onset of COVID-19 to keep their employees healthy and satisfied while working remotely. This London IT support company knows the stresses of work can be amplified while working from home, and so they are committed to supporting employee’s health and wellbeing.

So what are some of the ways in which a business can encourage happiness and health in the organisation?

Encourage Autonomy

There is plenty of evidence that shows employees work better when they are given autonomy. There may be a tendency within some businesses to micromanage their staff, as well as assigning teams that have too many members, because managers think that more team members equals quicker project turnover. This is largely incorrect. In fact, smaller teams generally work much better, because communication is easier and the fact that their managers place trust in them to work autonomously, they are actually happier and more productive while working.

Workers want to know that their managers and bosses trust them, and encouraging autonomy is a great way of doing this. This being said, it is also important that managers and bosses communicate with workers, and find out what their preferred method of work and management is.

Work-Life Balance

This is something that is more the responsibility of employees to manager. Work-Life balance has perhaps the biggest effect on life satisfaction, job satisfaction, productivity, and overall wellbeing. A lot of this has to do with an employee’s productivity at work – if they feel like they aren’t being productive, an employee will be more inclined to work extra hours, thus eroding the line between work and personal time. This can become quite a vicious cycle as employees become more disenfranchised, and therefore suffer lower productivity, and therefore try and work even longer to catch up.

There are a number of solutions to this. To begin with, an employee that is struggling at work should let their managers know they need help. It might be that they are struggling with their workload consistently, or perhaps they are simply experiencing a temporary pileup of work that they are struggling with. Either way, communicating this with one’s manager is essential. Employees should also take time to figure out what workflows work for them, what time or task management techniques help them stay on top of their work, etc. All this can help keep one’s stress levels down while at work.

Give Everyone Credit

It doesn’t matter what role they fill at work, every employee is important – there is no department or role in a business that is more worthy of credit, because a good business functions like a clock, with all the components, big and small, working together to become something that is more than the sum of its parts.

People need to know that they are being valued. There are plenty of employees in a business that work hard at what they do every day, and nobody notices their work – however, at the same time, everyone would notice if they stopped doing their work. This is an unfortunate paradox in businesses, and so its important to recognise what certain roles bring to a business, especially the invisible work that keeps businesses ticking over. Taking the time to acknowledge every person’s work, understand the importance of it, and let them know that the business is grateful for it.

Invest in Staff

Another thing that can easily disincentivise someone at work is when they feel like they are going nowhere with their job. Some people may work in the same role for years, and the nature of their work has hardly changed in that time. It is important for a business to invest in their staff. This could mean a number of things – for example, a business might pay for an employee to receive training in a certain aspect of their field. Or perhaps, give them opportunities to expand their role. Or, a business may want to give them the chance to explore different roles in the business – for instance, they may be an IT specialist working on the helpdesk, but they may want to get more experience with projects. Investing in staff by offering them opportunities to grow in their role, or explore different work, can go a long way in improving their job satisfaction.