Is there a manual for happiness at work?

Published on 04 March 2020

Reading time 3 minutes

Year after year, the great majority of us wonder how to achieve happiness at work, yet few of us find it. Is it too difficult to answer this relatively simple question, or are we asking the wrong question?  

Try asking yourself instead: what moves me? Perhaps, you will be better able to define your professional and personal priorities before signing a contract with a company and committing into a new role.

Well-being and job satisfaction

But that is certainly a matter of two. You have to do your part and the companies theirs. Companies, by creating policies to promote effective management for their people. And us, the people, by committing ourselves to the mission and work.  Like in a marriage, there must be transparency and alignment between both parts. In this way we manage expectations better and we know what can and can not be expected. 

Ultimately, well-being and job satisfaction is a consequence and not an end-goal. If we don't take care of each other, as a couple, it doesn't work ...  The same at work, if companies create policies to generate satisfaction, they must be well communicated, develop effective methods of performance evaluation, create challenges that improve self-esteem and use personal development tools.  

On our side, we must fundamentally believe in the project, find meaning in it because in this way we participate, we get involved and the commitment increases our capacity. 

Be flexible, open to learning, optimistic and willing to face challenges with drive and perseverance.

A new world of benefits at work

Some ingredients turn a workday into an element of personal self-realization such as motivation, work environment, professional development, work-life balance and empathy. However, not everyone enjoys the same recipe. 

Thus, there is no manual for happiness at work. What moves you is not the same thing that moves me. It is up to each of us to look for the companies that both set their employees up for happiness and fit us best. 

Tech companies rank at the top of this list - Google, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Cisco Systems, Microsoft and Netapp all boast high happiness ratings among employees. All of them have gone the extra mile in terms of well-being and have created a whole new world to discover for their employees.  

The almighty Google tops the list. Its mini California-based town--the "Googleplex"--offers its workers all kinds of services they may need: nursery, mobile libraries, massages, hairdresser, manicure, markets and capsules to take a mini nap. They even allow dogs at work and encourage family visits by children and spouses to their offices.  

The current CEO and co-founder of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, has donated a third of his shares to employees--an amount equivalent to 200 Million dollars. Dorsey tweeted on the subject saying that he prefers to have less of something big than much of something small. 

At Facebook, the third ranked company on the list, offers employees a complete technological welcome kit as well as many of the same services as Google. Mark Zuckerberg even meets with top Facebook candidates by taking them for walks and chatting with them about the company's vision.  

The perception workers have of the companies they want to develop is changing at a dizzying pace. Increasingly, we consider the aspects of our jobs that go beyond salaries or the reputation of the companies that we work for. Therefore, we must continue researching and adjusting the ingredients to our professional recipes according to our priorities.