Keeping positive relationships at work is more important than you may think.
Relationships make or break any job. The number one reason why people stay at work is if they have a best friend there. The number one reason why people quit is because of their boss. Some people even meet their spouse at work due to extensive working hours.
Each person contributes to the greater cause of the vision of the company. Whether you are the giver or the recipient of positive or negative reinforcement, you are a ‘part of a whole’ of an organization. You want to be a positive contributor to the vision of the company.
In 2008, Harvard research showed happiness impacts up to three degrees of separation. If you are an executive and you are positive, then you are influencing your team and their customers simply by embodying positivity.
Does a positive workplace culture impact the bottom line?
When employees feel ‘taken care of’, heard, and supported they become more loyal and innovative, greater ethical decisions are made, and they are more likely to go the extra mile.
This has a positive impact on employee turnover, absenteeism, & healthcare costs.
Positivity leads to flourishing. Employees who are positive are promoted more often, make more money for the company, have high sales numbers, offer better customer service, problem solve more effectively, rarely call in sick, and will go the extra mile for the company and their team. They are more likely to hit the home run!
The management team has to embody positivity as well as promote it. If the leadership of the company lacks happiness and leads with stress, it could lead to impacting the bottom line in a negative way through an increase in turnover, absenteeism, healthcare costs, mistakes or lawsuits, and even a large disability cost for depression. It can also lead to distrust within the employee population and potentially indicating a lack of integrity within leadership.
Beyond the question “Does happiness help the bottom line?”, it is fair to say unhappiness hurts the bottom line.
Research shows positive working relationships lead to better collaboration & higher performance.
Here are a few steps employers can take to foster positive relationships with employees.
Practicality is a sink or swim skill with happiness. It is easy to expect people to be positive yet actually giving them tools to implement when times get tough is paramount.
Here are a few ideas to help:
1. The “Triple A”
I appreciate _______
Show affection and give a high five.
Management Tip: In the next meeting give each team member a Triple A.
Debbie, I admire how you handled that difficult customer earlier.
I appreciate how you were able to be so graceful and calm.
Let me give you a high five!
Putting a dash of positivity into any meeting through giving team members a Triple A is an immediate happiness boost. This comes from the work of Dr. Sonja Lyubomirsky at UC Davis.
2. Three Nice Things -- The Emotional Bandaid
Management Tip: If you snap at someone and wish you were able to take back what you said in the heat of the moment, you can apply an emotional bandaid by telling the employee three nice things.
3. Constant Connection to Greater Purpose
Employees want to feel connected to a greater meaning and purpose.
Management Tip: As much as possible be transparent with employees on how their day to day contribution is aiding in the bigger picture of how the organization is providing value to the community.
4. Give Praise
Praise goes a long way!
Management Tip: Highlight an employee’s authentic contributions and reflect when you see them use their strengths at work. Give praise daily.
5. Reward System
Create a structure for employee rewards.
Management Tip: Enact a reward system and outline a positive track for positive contributions. Move beyond financial rewards to experiences and recognition.