How happy are you at work? Research discussed in a recent Business Matters article found that a fifth of people say their happiness decreases when they’re in the workplace.

But is happiness at work even important? And, if so, what can businesses do to ensure their offices incorporate happiness?

Importance of happiness at work

There has been a growing awareness of the impact wellbeing can have on individuals, businesses and society. According to the 2016 CIPD and Simplyhealth Absence Management Survey, almost half of the employers questioned said their organisation has increased its focus on wellbeing over the last year.

When asked why, nearly two thirds (63%) said they want their organisation to be a great place to work, while 47% believe employee wellbeing is linked to business performance.

The ‘Wellbeing and the Importance of Workplace Culture’ report by Great Place to Work called wellbeing a “key driver of engagement” and highlighted that it is strongly linked to an employee’s intention to stay or leave their company.

As well as decreasing a company’s turnover rate, happier workforces tend to be more productive, friendly, relaxed and creative – all of which have a positive impact on the company’s performance.

So, how can we incorporate happiness into the workplace? Firstly, we need to change how we view the working environment. As Dezeen argues, offices are moving away from being a tool designed to increase the productivity of workers to a place that puts the wellbeing of employees first.

A survey conducted by Office Genie found that workplace design has the biggest impact on employee happiness, with the right design boosting happiness by a staggering 33%. It even beat flexible working, which was found to increase employee happiness by 12%.

Discussing the idea of happiness at work, Mark Batey, senior lecturer in organisational psychology at Alliance Manchester Business School, said: “This is the human era of the workplace. The best places to work are those in which people can flourish and be their best selves – instead of pretending to be someone else five days a week. The perfect workplace also gives people flexibility and autonomy as to where and how they work, built on a culture of growth and trust.”

But this is more than just throwing in a Google-style slide – although we’re not saying that won’t increase the fun! To truly incorporate happiness into your workplace you need to create spaces that allow employees to work in the best possible way for them.

Here at Kerr we can help you weave a little happiness into your workplace through a clever use of furniture, colour and design. See what we can do for you today…