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International Week of Happiness at Work

International Week of Happiness at Work

This week is international week of happiness at work. As a people-led business, it’s an important date in the Ashbury calendar and one that we try to celebrate each year. But what is happiness? How can we foster a happy workplace? We asked our HR team and our colleagues to share their thoughts…

International happiness at work week

The state of happiness is a feeling of well-being. 

A quick search on google will reveal many definitions for the term ‘happiness’; whilst nuances exist the fundamental of each remains the same and describe it as a feeling of positive emotion and life satisfaction that involves pleasant feelings like joy and gratitude.

In social science, happiness is also defined as subjective well-being, meaning it is whatever one makes it to be. In other words, happiness is in the eye of the beholder – there is no one size fits all and it can have a different meaning to each of us. What is also clear is the link between a state of happiness and how satisfied individuals are with various aspects of their lives, such as family, education, and of course, the workplace. Given we spend nearly a third of our lives at work on average, it’s important we can find a sense of happiness in our roles. Equally, from an employer’s perspective, happiness translates to better performance, making investing in your people’s happiness a given.

Purpose, People, Progress, Positivity

As part of international week of happiness at work, four pillars of happiness in the workplace are introduced: Purpose, People, Progress, and Positivity:

  • Purpose is the ‘why’ and is associated with ambitions and goals – the driving force of what encourages an individual to get out of bed in the morning. At Ashbury, we make sure labels are accurate, honest, and legal. We help take the pressure off our clients. But it’s so much more than that. We understand why we do it. To help consumers make safe and informed choices. And that, in turn, we can – and do – save lives.
  • People are associated with connections built within the workplace. Creating spaces that encourage employees to form friendships allows openness and bonds to form. At Ashbury, the “People” start with recruitment, where ‘fit’ is an essential ingredient. Remote work environments make connections more of a challenge, but virtual meet-ups and adding non-work-related catch-ups into regular meetings have an important role to play.
  • Progress refers to success, which is linked to happiness – not only the bigger achievements but the small wins too. Progression within the workplace also promotes a sense of independence and responsibility, resulting in happier employees. Our professional development programmes give our team the chance to upskill and take on new challenges with confidence.
  • The final pillar of happiness at work is positivity. This involves a laughter-filled working environment, which is a significant factor in why people attend their job each day. Positivity spreads positivity – it’s contagious and can create the perfect working environment. By living Ashbury values, we act with positive intent every day, creating a happy experience for ourselves and others.

Each of these identified P’s helps promote happiness within the workplace – if you look closely enough, they can work within any business.

Happiness for Team Ashbury Means?

While the science of happiness has its merit, there is nothing like hearing the words straight from the horse’s mouth. We asked representatives in our business to share their happiness at work stories.

“I believe happiness in the workplace is important as it is not only a motivating factor towards productivity, but it also creates a positive space to work around daily. Happiness for me is found in my working relationships with my colleagues. For example, once a month, I meet with a particular colleague to have a virtual breakfast before we start working for the day. I find happiness in this as it allows me to catch up and form stronger connections.” – (Nikita)

“Happiness is so important in a workplace to keep motivated and feel challenged the right way. It makes you feel you can achieve the impossible with the correct guidance and support and reflects the company dynamics.

I have a good working relationship with my team. We have a great understanding of how we all work as a team, and it makes me understand them as individuals better, what motivates them, and what keeps them happy. I find happiness in this.” – (Janita)

“To me, happiness in the workplace is knowing that what you are doing is making a difference – being seen and heard. It is the feeling of “team” and a sense of trust and collaboration to achieve shared goals. What makes work happy for me are the little things like when our team has joke Friday or spotty clothes Wednesday, to the more serious moments of debate that resulted in a shared solution and the satisfaction and learning that comes with this.” – (Caitlin)

“Work is a huge part of your life, and it’s not worth being miserable for that amount of time spent doing something you don’t love or are not happy doing. Work gives us a great sense of purpose, achievement, and self-worth, and working in a nurturing and rewarding atmosphere. It’s well known that working so many days in a situation or for a company you are not happy with or in a role you’re not happy in can have detrimental effects on your mental and immune health. Happiness at work lends to a happier and healthier state of body and mind.

As with a lot of people in jobs, things have become much more technology and working from home focussed, which has some real benefits. I feel very grateful to be one of the people who can work completely from home with the support from Ashbury, as it gives me a better quality of life. However, I relish coming into the office once a month to catch up with colleagues in person. It’s great for creative thinking and brainstorming and important to have that in-person interaction with everyone in the office. ” – (Joanna)

 

Useful Links

Our People – Ashbury

 

References

Can-Happiness-be-Measured.pdf (researchgate.net)

What Is Happiness and How Can You Become Happier? (verywellmind.com)

The four pillars of Happiness at Work – Week of Happiness at Work (internationalweekofhappinessatwork.com)

Caitlin Stewart, Marketing Manager

My background in Food Science and Marketing means I have a unique combination of commercial creativity and technical food manufacturing experience. My ambition is to bring clarity to the complex world of compliance through the simple and eye-catching communication of Ashbury's services.

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