How employee happiness will boost your bottom line

“People are your greatest asset” is a corporate lexicon that is frequently used in business. Businesses are always looking for new ways to boost their bottom line and happy employees could be the key.

A study conducted by the University of Warwick found that productivity is 12-20% higher with happy workers. The study found happy workers use their time more effectively without sacrificing quality – the Holy Grail for any business.

Employers find that unhappy workers perform poorly in their roles and rub off on other team members. Employers who create a work culture that fosters happiness tend to see a measurable improvement in employee performance and their bottom line as a result.

Google is a great case study for this – their worker productivity is 40% higher than the average company’s, precisely because they have created a culture that fosters happiness. Subsequently, they have profit margins that are up to 50% higher than the industry average. Apple, Netflix and Dell also make the cut of companies whose worker productivity is 40% higher than average.

Engagement is essential

Businesses need to do more than merely ‘satisfy’ their employees if they want to extract their best performance. According to Bain & Company partner Michael Mankins, employees must feel inspired to reach peak performance.

Mankins says engaged employees are 44% more productive than satisfied workers, but inspired workers are 125% more productive still. He uses a great example to showcase this fact: Dell’s sales teams led by an inspirational leader are 6% more productive than those led by an average leader, equating to an extra £1 billion in annual revenue.

Happiness is good for business. This isn’t an innovative concept, but it is one your business can use to boost its bottom line.

A recent study polling 2,000 UK workers found one in four employees feel unhappy at work and subsequently, nearly half of those workers will look for new jobs this year. Those polled cited poor management (49%) and pay (40%) as the two biggest reasons behind their unhappiness. The US is facing a similar issue, with a study of 17,000 workers finding 71% of them are unhappy with their jobs and seeking a career change.