Ten ways to make your employees happy


By Catalina Andrade

Is employee happiness an issue at your organization? Have you heard grumbling around the water cooler? Here are some go-to ways to boost morale and improve employee happiness used by Retrofit, a leading provider of weight-management and disease-prevention programs:

  1. Truly trust your employees. You hire top talent to get the job done. Trust that they will and give them the freedom and flexibility to work whether it be sitting in the office at a desk or on the couch in their jammies.
  2. Unlimited time off. Whether your employees want to take a day off for a doctor’s appointment or a month away to visit Africa, give them the flexibility to do that as long as their work gets done.
  3. Allow everyone to innovate. You hire experts, now it’s time to involve them in decision making. Allow information to flow throughout the organization, not just from the top down.  We host a weekly virtual meeting where all employees are empowered to present their ideas or invite their peers to help them brainstorm solutions and innovate as a team.
  4. Bring the gym to work. If you have the budget for it, treadmill and standing desks are an easy way to stay fit while on the job. Having a designated spot for exercise balls and yoga mats is a less expensive option to accomplish the same objective. Yoga and exercise breaks are an effective way to boost energy levels and focus on the task at hand. Bonus: If your employees are healthy, they will be more productive and less likely to miss work due to illness.
  5. Give the gift of service. Allow your employees to take time away to volunteer in their community. Studies show that volunteerism increases happiness. At Retrofit, we give our employees “Good Egg Days” or one day off a quarter to give back to their community.
  6. Have your cake and the day off too. Give your employees their birthdays off to celebrate and enjoy the things they love. At Retrofit, we call these “Treat Yo’ Self days.” Be sure to recognize special occasions, such as birthdays and work anniversaries, internally.
  7. Go home and give thanks. Allow staff to take the day before Thanksgiving off to bake that pumpkin pie or prep for the pick-up football game.
  8. Power down week. Give employees the last week in December off to relax and rejuvenate before the new year.
  9. Spot bonuses. Who doesn’t like to be recognized the good ‘ole fashioned way with a little hard-earned cash? If you you don’t have a budget for spot bonuses, never underestimate the value of a handwritten note showing your appreciation for a job well done.  
  10. Ask: “Are you happy at work?” If they’re not, invite them to have some ownership in finding solutions to remove roadblocks to that happiness. Even if they’re happy, find out what drives that happiness and how you can still improve their experience. Every person and workplace culture is different - don’t assume that what worked at one company will work for yours.  


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