Productivity is fundamental in the success of a company regardless of nature, industry, or size. Have you ever found yourself performing better at work because you are happy? A study conducted by economists from the University of Warwick showed evidence that happiness can positively affect the productivity of an individual.
Spearheaded by faculty members of the University of Warwick’s Department of Economics, namely, Professor Andrew Oswald, Dr. Eugenio Proto, and Dr. Daniel Sgroi, the research involved carrying out a series of experiments to test whether there is a causal relation between the well-being of individuals and their level of productivity.
One of the experiments carried out by the team involved 2 sets of respondents. The first group was exposed to a comedy video clip while the second group of respondents was shown a neutral video clip. Subsequently, both groups were asked to accomplish a series of math problems. The end results indicated that the first group performed 12 percent better than the latter. In a similar type of experiment, the researchers provided a group of participants with chocolates and mineral water while waiting for their math exam to start. Meanwhile, a second group was asked to wait without being provided with anything to munch on. The results were consistent with the first experiment they ran and showed that the first group or the ‘happier’ group performed 15 to 20 percent better than the latter.
Applying it in the workplace
In the press release published by the university, Dr. Proto mentioned that “Happier subjects are more productive, the same pattern appears in four different experiments. This research will provide some guidance for management in all kinds of organizations, they should strive to make their workplaces emotionally healthy for their workforce.”
Recognizing the correlation between employee welfare and overall productivity is just the first step. Companies should actively advocate the happiness of employees to experience actual results. This goes beyond simply providing a considerable remuneration. Other factors include promoting work – life balance, having a healthy company culture, employee engagement, career growth, providing incentives, medical benefits, bonuses, and exclusive perks. Proving this, the top spot for Forbes list of happiest companies to work for in the year of 2015 is occupied by Johnson & Johnson despite offering lower annual packages than contenders in the list.
On a larger scale
More than contributing to a company’s success, a productive workforce positively impacts the economy. If a country has a positive workforce productivity growth trend, it is most likely to experience low inflation and strong export demand.
Singapore’s persistently productive and skilled workforce makes it a conducive place for starting and growing a business. In 2014, the Business Environment Risk Intelligence (BERI) Report ranked the city-state at the top spot of global rankings for labor force in terms of overall attitude and employees’ productivity.
The Government puts emphasis in workforce productivity and competitiveness by implementing training and skills development programmes. Such programmes are helpful in the career advancement of Singapore’s workforce, a vital factor in achieving job satisfaction and happiness.
Entrepreneurs who are looking forward to starting a business in Singapore will find it beneficial to invest in the happiness of their employees for optimal productivity. Taking advantage of government schemes and programmes to improve the competitiveness of your employees