Do You Believe in ‘Happiness Hours’?

Happy people are the most productive

Happy people are the most productive

I totally endorse the new initiative from the Dubai Health Authority in introducing ‘happiness hours’ for hard working employees who complete their tasks to a high standard: the reward being that they will be allowed to leave work three hours early once a month.

Of course, the key to employee motivation with increased performance and productivity is dependent upon excellent management initiatives and good communications.

Provided that leaders appreciate and value their teams, then they will find they have a more engaged and inspired workforce who will always give of their best.

Phrases that increase performance and productivity

However, often the challenge is that many managers rarely know how to give praise and, therefore,  a simple ‘thank you’ or ‘you’ve done really well and I appreciate that’…is rarely said.

      'Thank you...','I appreciate what you have done','Well done'...

If managers bring this language into the average working day, they will find that they will have happy workers with enhanced engagement and increased productivity.

On the other hand, where employees feel like they are merely ‘a number’, then all the ‘happiness hours’ in the world will not help!

We know that managing people is not easy. If leaders don’t have the necessary vital communication skills, then they need to be trained to develop this skillset as part of their leadership portfolio.

Communications is key to a successful business! To motivate its workforce, the DNA has to train its managers, at all levels, to recognise that the company’s most important asset is its human resource.

Book Carole as a Motivational Speaker Now!  She will deliver a charismatic, high-impact keynote presentation at your next conference. 

Contact us: info@carolespiers.co.uk or call

+ 44 (0) 20 8954 1593. www.carolespiers.co.uk

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The Impact of Losing concentration

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4 Easy Ways to Deal with Stress

‘I keep losing focus’, complains Noreen. ‘I wish I could concentrate better’, says Abdul.  Do you hear yourself sometimes saying this?   There are so many things to think about that you just cannot seem to be able to concentrate properly, any more.

Concentration is the ability to focus upon one thing at a time.  This is not necessarily an easy skill to develop and retain as life, for all of us, has so many disruptions.

Multitasking:  Some of us pride ourselves on being able to do more than one thing at a time but the chances are that instead of doing one task really well, we actually manage to do a number of tasks not so well. The reason being that trying to do too much contemporaneously usually leads to poor performance or mediocre outcomes.

Distraction and Boredom:  You cannot concentrate properly until you stop yourself from being distracted!  Now this might seem very obvious but we can fail to take the requisite action to either remove the distraction from us or to remove ourselves away from the distraction. Continue reading

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The importance of being happy at work

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4 Easy Ways to Deal with Stress

On 20th March, it is The International Day of Happiness – an official day that is now celebrated throughout the world and was established by the United Nations in 2012.

The day recognizes that happiness is a fundamental human goal, and calls upon countries to approach public policies in ways that improve the well being of all peoples.

 

Key factors

Being happy at work is one of the keys to being truly happy in life as most people spend 20 – 30 years working which is about 30% of the average human lifespan.

There are, of course, many factors that impact professional happiness, including business relationships, professional development, work-life balance, environment and organisational culture.

Obviously, you have no control over whether your employees are happy at home but you do have some control as to how happy they are at work.  And if you don’t know if your employees are happy, then why not ask them? Continue reading

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Work in Progress

Find out how to deal with stress

4 Proven Steps to Beat Your Stress!

Last week, I received a letter from Claudia, a 41 year old female doctor working in an Accident & Emergency department in a central London hospital.

“Dear Carole, I feel trapped in a mundane existence.  I feel that I am stuck; my life is out of control and I am going nowhere!  When I first started out, I believed that a better life was possible.  I dreamed of achieving great things and living a life full of value and purpose.  I wanted to become a great doctor and make a difference to society – there was nothing more important to me.  However, over the years, the demands and frustrations of the job have crushed my dreams and I have now settled for an unremarkable existence, having lost my vision for the future.  Can you help me to get off this endless treadmill onto a new, more rewarding path?” Continue reading

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Taking Gratitude into 2015

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4 Easy Ways to Deal with Stress

Time flies by so fast that it is difficult to realise that we are about to say ‘Goodbye!’ to 2014 and ‘Hello!’ to the New Year.  You probably have many things to be thankful for over the last twelve months but, like the rest of us, you have also had your challenges.

Maybe your ‘life script’ did not turn out as you would have liked – but then life often throws up unexpected challenges to be overcome, such as health issues or relationship problems.  That is the order of our lives and with a new year ahead of us, it is worth remembering to be grateful for what we actually do have – our family, our friends, our work and all those special moments in our lives.

Of course, it is very easy to feel sorry for ourselves when things go wrong.  Maybe you didn’t get that promotion you wanted or you lost a personal relationship.  Your health may have deteriorated and such issues are often tough calls to handle particularly if they come together.

But that doesn’t really help us to move on.  In order to do that, we need to take full responsibility for what is in, and what is out, of our control.  There is no point in wasting time, energy or even money on that over which you have no control.  However, there is a point in accepting a particular situation as it stands and seeing how you can amend your life script to take account of it.  Your life-script may not be within your own control, but the attitude that you exhibit in your approach to situations that you encounter, is within your determination and can positively influence outcomes in your favour. Continue reading

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Don’t Get Stressed out Because of Sloppy Work

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The Essential Guide to Managing Stress

I just fired one of my Section Leaders!’ Abdul, the recently appointed SVP of a construction company, in Abu Dhabi, told me last week during my monthly coaching phone call. ‘And what were your reasons?’ I asked.  ‘He was making repeated work errors that were unacceptable’.  I couldn’t manage the situation any longer as he was becoming a liability to the whole department,’ he replied. I listened attentively as he continued, ‘Carole, do you think I did the right thing?’

Not an easy one to answer!  We all know how important it is to take remedial action when we see work that is unacceptable but it is not always simple for some individuals to change.    Having operated personally in a certain way for years, it is often too difficult for them to change their mindset and way of working.  However, such a situation may need to change dramatically when a new senior executive arrives.

A new SVP can mean that you are faced with an immediate challenge.  Either raise your game immediately or accept the fact that you may have to find alternative employment with another company or organisation.  Neither of these are easy choices but they are ones that need to be addressed. Continue reading

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De-stress: Industry’s role in helping the 60+

Find out how to deal with stress

4 Proven Steps to Beat Your Stress!

One of my clients is a former WW2 soldier, now 90 years old.  He talks about the Normandy landings in France during the Second World War and can still hear the explosions and feel the fear of that day, 70 years ago.  However, the battle that he faces now is not post-traumatic stress but loneliness.

Loneliness is not the same as being alone.  Most of us will choose to be alone, at times.  But loneliness is being alone not by choice but by circumstance and that feeling of isolation can be devastating.

Older people, who may have suffered a bereavement are more vulnerable to feeling isolated, particularly for the first months or even years after the event – and their loss can have an adverse effect on both mental and physical health. Continue reading

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Stressed Out and Firefighting – again!

4 Easy Steps to Beat Your Stres

The Essential Guide to Managing Stress

As a manager, do you regard yourself as acting reactively or proactively, the majority of the time?  Do you pride yourself on your ‘firefighting skills’ or your planning expertise?

Reactive management refers to situations for which you cannot, (or fail to), plan and which then require you to enter into reactive mode in order to deal with them.  This usually means that situations arise that you failed to anticipate and which then need ‘firefighting’ to resolve the issues that have arisen.  Of course, you may well have become extremely good at doing this.  However, have you have ever thought how efficient you really are at such times?  You may have convinced yourself that you work better under stress.  You may need the ‘adrenaline rush’ to get you moving and you love working late into the early hours of the morning in order to meet a deadline. However, have you considered the knock-on effect to other people around you who will be also be affected? Continue reading

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Business Relationships

work stress, keynote speaker, how to deal with stress, anxiety, stress symptoms, signs and symptoms of stress, stress free, Show Stress Who's Boss!, carole spiers, stress management, stress & anxiety, symptoms of stress, stress management techniques, stress-free, stress symptoms, de stress, wellbeing, mental health

4 Easy Ways to Deal with Stress

Is there someone in your office with whom you find it challenging to deal? Is your life at work being harmed by a difficult relationship? That difficulty could be with a colleague, a business partner, a manager, director, customer or supplier. You may be spending time at night worrying about it; thinking about it constantly and/or discussing it with colleagues, husband or wife.

It is often said that we cannot choose our family and therefore need to learn how to manage our relationships with them – and the same applies to those at work. If a particular individual is not to our personal liking – for any reason – then because we do not have the luxury of walking away, we need to find a basis upon which to communicate. We all have a job to do and we need to be able to communicate well with everyone in our team. That still applies even if you are a sole practitioner, as you will need to communicate politely with clients/ customers, who you may not like, for otherwise you will have no business! Continue reading

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Would You Work for Nothing?

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Author of Show Stress Who’s Boss

Of course, there are many people who do work for no money.  They are termed voluntary workers, or volunteers and there are countless such individuals who take on and enjoy that role.  Their satisfaction is derived from helping others and not from any financial reward. The reward that makes a difference to the life of another human being is enough for them.  However, there is a debate as to whether people really do things for purely altruistic reasons or whether there is also an inner benefit for themselves.

I remember when I worked in the evenings as a volunteer for the Samaritans (an international crisis helpline), for over 20 years, that the satisfaction I received in helping someone in a personal crisis, far outweighed any remuneration.

Job Satisfaction Survey

This week, I was sent a survey into job satisfaction and the results showed that money does not necessarily bring happiness.  One in ten workers said they ‘loved’ their job so much that they would do it for nothing and researchers discovered that 11% claim they would carry on working even if they were not paid! One in eight of those in poorly paid jobs said they were very happy in their work, compared with just nine per cent of higher earners. It was also interesting to read that this study, which polled more than 8,000 workers including 1,968 in Britain, found that younger workers were apparently the least happy.

So where are you on the ‘job satisfaction’ scale?  Well, I guess you will say that you can’t love your job all the time and of course you are right. There will be tasks you enjoy doing and things you don’t. That is the nature of our day-to-day job. The question is, are you generally happy, overall?  Do you have a ‘spring’ in your step when you go to work or do you have to pull yourself out of bed as you reluctantly have to face another day at the office?  An interesting question. 

Now I can already hear some of you saying that satisfaction is a nice to have but not a necessity and of course the job needs to get done, whether you like it or not.  But think of how much more efficient and enjoyable your role would be if you really loved what you do – which reminds me of the well-known line from The Prophet by Khalil Gibran, which says, ‘work is love made visible’.

And then whose responsibility is it to try and encourage their employees to love their work rather than just having to ‘get through it’?  I would argue that this is a joint responsibility. The employer who doesn’t value the individual who works for them and makes that clear to them, will probably not have an employee who feels happy in what they do.  After all, we all usually like to think that we are doing a good job.  On the other hand, there is the employee who is always complaining about their work but never takes any action to try to improve their situation. The result is a dysfunctional workplace in which both the employer and employee contribute to a work environment that is counter-productive and expensive in terms of efficiency and health and which invariably results in competitive disadvantage.

If you are that employer, then what can you do about it?  Well, you can do nothing and accept the status quo or you can make a decision to find out by taking a ‘satisfaction survey’ of all staff members and employees throughout your organisation to determine how everyone feels about their individual job. The imperative for any business is to get the most out of all those who work for you, on any level.

As an employee, you should take responsibility for what you do and don’t like about your job.  Assess each point carefully and see what changes could be made; what support you might need and what training would be helpful; then start to implement those changes.

We don’t go through our lives always being happy.  Sometimes, we have to make happiness find us. We need to take action to gain the maximum satisfaction for, and from, our lives.

Key Points

  • An efficient organisation has a satisfied workforce
  • Your human resource is your most important resource
  • Value those who work for you and they will work twice as hard

Written by Carole Spiers and reprinted with the kind permission of Gulf News.

 

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