Happiness Just Works - Part 1
About the same time I wrote my book, Powered by Happy, the phrase "Employee Engagement" was gaining traction. It was great timing as my book is truly centered around employee engagement but my reference is happiness. Why? Because it just works! It's simple and easy to relate to and understand. I have seen so many initiatives go south because of words or processes that are too complex! Complexity kills, where keeping it simple works! When employee engagement came out we had a big launch party as we were offering it as a service. I asked 4 executives to be on a panel to talk about how they engage their employees. Right before one of them pulled me over and said "Now what exactly is employee engagement?" It's not that he hadn't been actively engaging his associates but felt the word wasn't easy to understand or perhaps not used in his company's vocabulary so therefor it didn't exist.
It's just like when I was called a Human Capital Management expert and didn't even know what it meant. Why do we feel it so necessary to create big words with misunderstood meanings? Do we think it makes us look smarter? There is a reason the KISS (keep it simple silly!) methodology is so successful! Because when things are simple, it's much easier to relate to and institutionalize into our companies! It just works!
The word and even concept of "happiness" doesn't seem "corporate" or "sophisticated" enough and yet it is the most coveted emotion and state of mind we strive for in our jobs! Happiness is important to everyone and it is contagious. A good engagement score is something the business or a manager benefits from. A good happiness score is something we all benefit from.
The old mantra still rings true, "Happy associates are productive associates" and very simply this is what employee engagement gets you! Happy associates and better business results! Who doesn't want that?
I am a consultant so of course by nature that means we use a lot of big words and fancy PowerPoint slides, but I don't want to just look smart I want to BE smart! And that means knowing our customers and gaining the best results in the shortest period of time for them! Employee engagement and having "Happy" employees is a change management effort! It is not just a survey! It is not an event! It's what you do AFTER the survey that is most impactful! Adoption of new concepts and processes are best done when it is easy to understand and people can get their heart and head around it in order to change behaviors and get results. When it's part of your culture and every day existence, it’s not an "effort”, it’s just part of who you are and your culture.
Make it SIMPLE to gain momentum! Define it! Show what it looks like! Help people not only achieve it for themselves, but help others achieve it too! Who doesn't know what happiness means? Its definition is personal, it's unique, it's different for everyone, just like employee engagement. One size DOES NOT fit all! We must customize our Programs to what our associates need and want. They are motivated differently, they want to be recognized differently, they want to feel valued and contribute to your vision in a meaningful way. Understand that, respond to it accordingly and you will be well on your way to having "Happy" AND engaged employees! Call us, if you want to hear more about how your employees can be Powered by Happy!