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The business case for happiness at work

28 Jul 2010 | Psychology Today

Last week I met someone I'd coached a few years ago for a catch-up dinner. Her face was glowing and she was radiating enthusiasm and energy. Her organization had been through a very tough time with job losses, new management, high levels of uncertainty. And she had been given lots of new challenges to deal with, responsibilities and in areas she'd had little knowledge of. She was loving it all and told me that she was incredibly happy at work.

But what is the general effect that supposedly post-recessionary times are having on happiness and productivity?

At iOpener the research and consulting company I run, we've been collecting data about happiness at work and productivity since before the recession started. So we can compare some before, during and after recession numbers, all of which are really interesting.

One of the main ways we measure the effect of happiness at work is by looking at time people spend on task - or doing what they're there to do. Before the recession, people who were really happy at work reported that they spent 78% of their day on task. The rest was taken up by sorting diaries, doing mundane stuff like waiting on calls, for frozen screens - the kind of thing that gets in the way of real work. In contrast people who were most unhappy at work said that they spent only 53% of their time on task. That's a 25% difference between both groups.

Read article here


Action for Happiness


  • Being playful isn't a waste of time - it's sociable and connects us with something intrinsically good and true within

    today 6:59am

  • Mindfulness has the potential to transform our lives and help create a happier, kinder society http://t.co/InYELCqMf9 http://t.co/MyazxM3hkQ

    today 4:47am

  • Next time you're upset or angry, take a minute to breathe. Just breathe in and out. And then speak or act

    today 11:59am

  • @oneworldconsult: A free 8 week online course on The Science of Happiness #PositivePsychology http://t.co/2A5kiZtgEG @…

    yesterday 8:14am

  • Do more of what makes you (and others) happy http://t.co/btbB8xdw1b

    yesterday 8:11am

  • Happiness is not about things being perfect or having everything. It's about making the most of what we have and coping when things go wrong

    yesterday 9:30am

  • The best feeling of happiness is when you're happy because you've made someone else happy http://t.co/qVDZ6bTBHG

    saturday 20 dec 10:19am

  • @alxflxnun: Lovely rational call for a compassionate society - giving is simply more fun! http://t.co/pgdjXOBuDT @TEDTa…

    saturday 20 dec 2:12am

  • @beccawarner: Amazing event this week to help Londoners practice the 10 Keys to a Happier Life: http://t.co/eh5tEr5Ycm

    saturday 20 dec 2:12am

  • The care and attention we share with our loved ones this Christmas matters so much more than the physical gifts we give and receive

    saturday 20 dec 11:06am

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