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Yes! Happiness is in companies, business school and goverment agendas. And however they describe it, different terms and words are being used, all agree that having happy people and therefore, happy employees, make the workplace more effective.

How? Will be the question that many managers and sceptics will ask. The consulting firm, Delivering Happinnes at Work (DHW) has compiled a list with some, and very interesting numbers,

33% higher profitability
43% more productivity
37% higher sales
300% more innovation
51% lower turnover
50% less safety incidents
66% decrease in sick leave
125% less burnout

You can believe these numbers, or not, but the true is that many companies are focusing more and more on the well- being of their employees.
In this line, SAP News published recently an article in our intranet called, “Stay Fit and Happy” where our SAP Global Heath Managment, Natalie Lotzmann, higtlighed the importance of protecting our physical and mental health, as a first step.

This article is framed in our People, Diversity and Health week. Differente locations,  all around SAP, have engaged to support onsite activities during this week in an event that is a real cross-functional team effort;  different departments join forces to create a great experience for employees across the globe. An event with a different objectives. And one of them is to help our employees to “stay fit and happy”.

Chess tournament and Indian head massage in Uk; healty cooking workshops and daily healthy menu in the canteen in Italy; or Wii available for the employees to make a break in Spain. These, and much more, are examples of activities that have been running out to help our employees to find different ways of dealing with stress, recharge their batteries and therefore stay fit and productive in the long run.

Happy people are more productive, more creative at problem solving and more effective. Therefore, it looks that promoting happinnes in the companies, makes sense.

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  1. Steffi Warnecke

    Hello Cristina,

    your blog provided more arguments for our discussion in the blog Coffee Corner: Is It Time to Quit Your Job? | SCN. So thank you for that!

    These activities for the employees sound great. I hope, they stay on even after this week of focussing on it. 🙂

    I think the same idea is behind the “free coffee and snacks”- deal, some companies have. In mine we get free coffee and different types of mineral water, so that’s something, too to help motivation (and hydration ^^ which is keeping us fit, too).

    Regards,

    Steffi.

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    1. Cristina Antelo Post author

      Hello Steffi,

      Thanks ! I read your post and I fully agree with you.

      It is really important having fun in your job. And when I say this, I do agree also with your definition of “fun”.

      I would say more, you need to believe in what you do and enjoy the whole day long despite the inconveniences.

      And yes, some of the activities launched for employees during the Health week, stay the whole year. I.e: massages in some locations and veggie/ healthy week in the canteens.

      Others just run during this week. My hope is that they become regular activities in the future.

      Cheers,

      Cristina 

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  2. Craig S

    It would be nice if companies actually embraced this concept.  The problem I see is that almost all “well-employee” programs are brought about because the company is looking at controlling benefits.  Especially right now with health benefits.

    Employees see these programs for what they are.  While the programs can definitely help employees, we know the only reason that companies do them is for a cost savings.

    I think companies need to find a way to provide “happiness” programs without employees thinking they are always tied to a bottom line cost.  Such as the cost savings ones you listed in the blog.

    Until companies show through repetitive deeds and actions that they are truly loyal and dedicated to their employees, and not just trying to lower costs or improve productivity, few employees will feel loyal and dedicated to the employer.

    This is one reason I doubt I will ever be able to feel a strong loyalty to a company again.  One or two bad HR decisions on how they treat employees, the inability to use common sense exceptions to certain policies, using the letter of the law (policies) to always favor the company, etc.. etc.. These all destroy loyalty building programs.

    I.e. Happiness is only allowed provided it makes sense for the company.  Not because they really care.

    When was the last time major companies held a company picnic?  A common thing thing in the 50’s and 60’s. Gone. The proverbial Christmas party?  Gone… Sponsored industrial softball leagues?  Mostly gone.  Bowling leagues?  Mostly gone.  Some big companies even had their own picnic grounds and rec centers!!!

    Companies no longer really understand what make employees happy.

    FF

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    1. Cristina Antelo Post author

      Hello FF,

      Thanks for your posting.

      I see these initiatives as a win-win. Ourselves should be the first interested  in making a difference to our health and well being. We all should try to do exercise in regular basis, eat healthy and sleep well.

      If, on top of that,  the company I work for, spent time and resources to provide their employees with tools and new skills to protect their physical and mental health, it can be good for the company, but is even better for employees!

      If this is profitable for the company, this will meant that this company I work for, will be sustainable in the long run. And this is also good for me.

      Cristina

      p.s: we keep on holding company picnic. We call them Summit Day 😉

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