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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


  • Let go of the things you think 'should' make you happy and focus more on what actually makes you happy in the moment http://t.co/Pvtmx3TzM2

    today 11:16am

  • @orfray: In many cases, words are actions. Words of kindness can give comfort, strength, happiness and be remembered forever @actionhap…

    yesterday 9:13am

  • @marktrez: Do Nice, Be Kind, Spread Happy http://t.co/2Sl4q6GqQs London event via

    yesterday 9:13am

  • The trick is to enjoy life. Don't wish away your days waiting for better ones ahead http://t.co/N04VeEgfAS

    yesterday 9:12am

  • Every act of kindness counts. Each one creates potential ripples that contribute to a happier and more caring world http://t.co/WmjEUP9mDg

    yesterday 6:13am

  • @betterussell: carrying a spare brolly In case I see a soggy person in need of shelter. Top autumnal activity! #bekind

    yesterday 6:10am

  • Tips to deal with anger: stop to breathe; be assertive not aggressive; consider the consequences; be kind to yourself http://t.co/02zLa8mywu

    yesterday 3:38am

  • @michaelvjjones: Do Nice, Be Kind, Spread Happy Thur11Sep2014 ~ #Kindness #Happiness ~ http://t.co/0gJt5VC4z1 ~ http://…

    yesterday 3:36am

  • @CEOJimC: #ceowell See Life as it is, BUT focus on the good bits! http://t.co/jipOiRIoJ0

    yesterday 12:48pm

  • For a happier life, we don't just need to experience things that are pleasurable, we also need to do things that are purposeful

    yesterday 12:36pm

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