3 Innovative Companies That Focus on Employee Happiness
Most companies today understand that employee happiness is a critical element in your business’ productivity and success. But how many of those companies are really walking the walk? Which companies have figured it out and are implementing employee happiness programs that really work? Here is a look at three companies who have really put a premium on employee happiness and serve as examples of programs that clearly have a meaningful impact on a company’s workers.
- Southwest AirlinesSouthwest Airlines is one company that really has it figured out when it comes to employee happiness. One of their programs includes allowing employees from different departments to help design not only their schedules but their uniforms as well. It was a brilliant move that really helped employees become a part of the company’s culture and emphasized engagement — the feeling that employees are valued members of the company team — which is the critical element of employee happiness.
Another part of their engagement strategy is the weekly “shout out,” where the company CEO singles out employees who have gone above and beyond with special praise.
- GoogleGoogle is famous for its great treatment of their employees, but it’s about more than gourmet lunches and pinball machines in the break room. Google promotes transparency, freedom and creativity. If someone is not happy at Google, the people who can do something about it find out and fix it. They have created a culture where there is a minimum of gossip or private grousing. Google also has employees spend a fifth of their time on projects that aren’t within their typical job description, which further fosters creativity.
- Full ContactSoftware company Full Contact’s strategy for employee happiness isn’t for every company, but if you have workers who suffer from an excess of stress related to work, it might work for yours. The company offers “paid paid” vacations, meaning you not only get your normal salary for taking time off, but the company actually pays you to do it.
The reason they do this is because too many employees often fail to use their vacation for the recuperative purpose for which it is intended. They keep calling the office, checking emails or doing other things so that their mind is never really off their work. Full Contact pays their employees to go away somewhere and be as far away from work as possible. There’s no work-related activity during this time, so they can truly return refreshed, as well as be free of the stress of thinking the company cannot possibly survive for two weeks without them.
While these employee happiness programs work for these particular companies, you will have to find the right strategies that work for you and your employees. Remember: perks like catered meals, paid vacations and a well-furnished break room are nice and let your employees know you care, but the really effective employee happiness initiatives are the ones that engage your employees and make them feel connected to the company.