The Happiness Survey

Happiness and productivity, though not interchangeable, are definitely interconnected with each other. You can be happy, and hence, productive at work; and / or, you can be productive, and hence, happy at your workplace. Both these cases are slightly dissimilar. The former is when your performance peaks because you are happy at work, and, the latter is when you are happy, only if you are able to perform to the best of your abilities.

 

The underlying belief system for an individual in the first case is ‘I’m okay, but they are not okay’, and in the second, ‘You are okay, but I’m not okay’. The third belief system and the one nurtured by any healthy organisation as its culture is, ‘I’m okay and you are okay’. Meaning, I accept the way I am, and, also the way you are, irrespective of any differences, and, I am open to work together to bridge any gaps and perform. Hence, categorizing your work force broadly into these three belief systems that people generally behold can be the foundational premise to design and administer a Survey in your organisation. These are also called as the three different ego states by Eric Berne in his concept of ‘Transactional Analysis’.

 

Tapping organisational insights

 

A survey built by keeping these basic principles in mind would beyond any doubt provide highly useful insights about one’s organisation. Of course, the thumb rule that any HR professional would never ignore is, ‘Almost all issues related to people revolve around Money & Ego’. Considering the demographics of today’s workforce and their lifestyle, one of the biggest challenges that the leadership in any organisation faces is engaging the millennials positively, such as to harness maximum productivity from them with minimum attrition.

 

Mid-level Managers who are also good mentors are the best frontline leaders who can help the HR with some extremely critical inputs about their reportees.  Also, 360-degree feedback is a very effective tool to understand the ground realities in an organisation. Such activities and interactions provide the HR Team the basis to design questions for a survey. In a way, this works to reverse engineer the survey, to precisely get to the root cause of issues that may be plaguing the company.

 

In Quotes “Mid-level Managers who are also good mentors are the best frontline leaders who can help the HR with some extremely critical inputs about their reportees.  Also, 360-degree feedback is a very effective tool to understand the ground realities in an organisation.

 

Floating a survey in an organisation to know the ‘Happiness Quotient’ takes courage and character from the leadership. Because, some of the responses may be a hard hit right on the face of the top management. But, it is better to face the bitter truth coming from your own people and improve, rather than getting knocked out of business by one’s competitors.

 

The organisational irony

 

There are no perfect people, there is no perfect company either. Every organisation has its own share of people related challenges. Also, be it an organisation or an individual, irony remains to be a part of their evolution. Many a times, we see that a well-performing IT company, has its own share of IT related challenges. Similarly, an HRD company boasting of a long list of clientèle, could be struggling with its own HRD issues. Though, designing a survey with some really well pointed questions is a precursor to identify the real gaps in an organisation, what is even more important is how these responses and feedback are used to bridge those gaps. The action plan should be formulated in collaboration with both the top leaders and the frontline leaders.

 

An organisation in pursuit of happiness and prosperity would never want performance at the cost of work-life imbalance for its folks. Considering the dynamics of today’s world, there could be a sizeable population in your company who could be feeling stressed at work, because of the baggage that they may be carrying from their personal life. Hence, you may also want to give an option to your folks to confidentially share their personal challenges to a counsellor. Though, facilitating a counselling session is a highly sensitive task, it is imperative for an organisation to do so, as it ensures a holistic approach in ensuring a happy work place. Hence, many matured organisations have consulting therapists / counsellors on board.  After all, an HR of a company is like an Eagle, which soars very high with a bird’s eye view of the entire organisation, and yet, is extremely well connected with the grass roots, unlike anybody else!

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