By Sydney Sloan
What makes the happiest workers happy? If you are hiring, what attributes are prospective employees most likely looking for in potential companies? To help solve the mystery of what makes people happy at work, here are some of the common threads I often see in companies whose employees love what they do:
1. Mobility and flexibility
Happy employees work at companies that allow for freedom and flexibility through mobility. A recent Jive/Harris survey shows that 35 percent of workers feel mobile gives them the ability to work from anywhere, and therefore gives them feelings of greater freedom. The modern workforce is global, fast-paced and technology-powered. Work doesn't have to be done within the confines of a cubicle or office space anymore; people can now be connected from anywhere. The growing millennial workforce is kicking this company culture shift into high gear, causing employers to rethink how their employees use mobile to get work done and stay connected, specifically as it pertains to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies. The good news is that strides in cloud and mobile technology are giving companies the reassurance they need to keep their data secure, while giving employees the flexibility they desire.
2. Fewer emails and meetings
Email and meetings are classic examples of bottlenecks that keep employees from getting work done; a staggering 79 percent of employees say that they waste time on email. And 19 percent report that meetings are the biggest hindrance to productivity on any given day. No one likes to be in email or meeting jail, so cut down on these time-wasters, leverage new technology, and you will find happier and more productive workers coming out of the woodwork.
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3. A connection to something bigger
Employees who are "brought into fold" early on feel valued and have more trust and respect for their employers. Time and again, we find that employees love to work at companies that foster a creative environment in which they feel like they are part of something bigger, no matter their job description or title. A good way to start is through executive blogging – and not just when there is a company crisis! Not only will the transparency and proactive communication go a long way, employees can contribute ideas to important company goals or projects they might not have even known otherwise existed!
4. Having fun at work
No one loves a job that's all work and no play. One way to encourage fun is to foster a sense of community – create a shared space where employees can interact about things they're passionate about outside of work. At Jive, we use our platform to share throughout the day, and we create spaces in that platform for people to share more about their personalities and interests – from photos of pets to tips on the best BBQ recipe. By creating a corporate space that encourages Jive employees to have fun and be themselves, everyone is closer, has more fun, and loves work more.
5. Space to do the work they love
Every person in every company was hired for a specific reason, and people are the greatest asset any company has! Happy employees always have room to spread their wings at work and create, instead of being constrained by meeting after meeting or a barrage of emails. Giving people space to do the work they love to do – whether it's to build, code, create, design, or develop – will result in a group of happier workers who love their jobs, perform better and ultimately want to stay around longer.
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