“I help people be happier at work…”
What is happiness at work?
A happy worker is someone who knows what they are doing and why they are doing it. The same applies to a team, large or small. Expectations, values, processes and communications are clear and aligned and everyone is trusted to do their job the best way they can.
Flexibility is necessary for happiness at work. Not everyone thinks or works the same way but, by first understanding and then harnessing those differences, you can build a productive and happy workplace. If there’s a disconnect in expectations or a lack of flexibility, this often results in discontent, poor performance or inertia.
Where is the disconnect?
I work with clients to look for the places in a business where the people, roles, processes and values are not in sync. These are the questions I look to answer:
How do the relationships work?
It’s vital to understand how relationships work in practice. Who is in charge? Who thinks they’re in charge? Is there mutual respect?
Who works here and what do they really do?
Sometimes the reality of someone’s job is different to the job description they signed up for. Is the person clear on their role? Are colleagues clear? Has this been communicated well? Does everyone agree? Who does more/less?
What personal and professional styles are there in the team?
Do personal and professional styles complement or work against each other? What are the consequences?
Are expectations clear?
Is everybody on the same page as to what they need to do and how it should be done? They may have been given the same information, but have they interpreted it in the same way?
Moving beyond what you think you see
When your team isn’t delivering the service you need for your customers to be happy, the challenge is to understand why and what to do about it.
I’m often called in to look at an issue and then find the cause lies elsewhere because assumptions have been made. Business leaders see a problem and because it is their business and they have significantly more professional experience than other colleagues, they offer a solution as ‘they know best’.
But, they tend to see the effect and not look beyond to find the cause.
Putting people first
Everybody in your team contributes to the success of your business, whether that’s the CEO or the receptionist, so everybody needs to be listened to achieve business happiness. If you ask the right questions and listen, you could find out that there are personality clashes between team members or that the manager isn’t managing staff well.
The key is to set aside your role, assumptions and judgements, listen to your people, ask focused questions and gather as much information as you can from their perspective. That way you can get to the heart of the issue and then make informed decisions.
Even better, have someone independent do this, someone objective like me. You’ll find that your people are more open and willing to share with somebody outside of the organisation.
I believe in a people-centred approach and work with you and your people first. This may be where the problem is, but it is also where you will find the solution.
How to get started
If you would like to have a happier team of people to make your business more effective and efficient, contact me at email@example.com