If morale at your company or organization seems like it is at an all time low, you are not alone. Last week, The Conference Board reported employee morale is at the lowest level since they started tracking it 22 years ago. Less than half of all workers are satisfied with their jobs.
With that news it can’t be a surprise that so many companies are performing poorly. The model of the past looks as if organizations go out of their way to make their employees unhappy. They rule by fear, indifference, and ask you to be grateful for having a job.
Not all companies are bad places to work. Just this week Fortune published their 100 Best Companies Places To Work. Other companies in corporate America are catching on as well. Sue Shallenbarger points out in her WSJ Article ” Thinking Happy Thoughts At Work” , these companies are bringing in coaches and other experts to teach happiness to the employees. Some of the happiness inducing modalities used are meditation, inner peace, gratitude, and other techniques,which have wide ranging influences from positive psychology to Hinduism.
There have been many research studies over the years which show the positive impacts of happy employees, including less absenteeism, lower turnover, higher productivity, and more creativity. So get this, happy employees can improve your bottom line. Try it as an experiment, see what happens.
Here are some tips to get you started:
1. Catch your employees doing things well and right. Then tell them. What we dwell on grows. Focus on what is working well, what people are doing right, and watch things improve.
2. Bring in a coach, or other specialist to empower the people you work with how to be happier. The full impact of a practice such as meditation is not even known, but what we is known is that it reduces stress, clarifies thinking, people have reported being more creative, and feeling more alert.
3. Make a gratitude list every day for what, and who you are grateful for at your organization. Now go out and tell the people on the list you are grateful for them, their work, and their contribution. Be specific. It might be worth sounding a little crazy, to make a real difference.
Fortune released it’s annual list of the top 100 companies to work for in the U.S.
If you are thinking about making a move and not sure where to start, this list may point you in the right direction. At least 14 companies on the list pay 100% of their employees health care premiums. Other companies have perks that include home buying assistance, paid sabbaticals,and even wardrobe assistance.
Topping off the list at #1 is North Carolina based software developer SAS, who catapulted forward form #20 last year.
Google – which has long been known as a special place to work – hangs steady at #4. I wonder how long that will last, with this week’s announcement that founders Larry Page and Sergey Brinplan to divest their majority stake in the company over the next 5 years. As the wall-street types take control of the company, will they keep intact the environment which foster creativity, innovation, and attracts amazing talent? or, Will they look to make cuts the first time the stock price drops?
With investment adviser Edward Jones at #2, and Wegmans Food Markets at #3; rounding out the top 5 is a giant leap for Dreamworks Animation jumping from #47 to #5. To find out what makes these companies so great to work at Check out the full list here.