Happy and productive staff? We’ve got the formula, says study » SMEInsider

Happy and productive staff? We’ve got the formula, says study

If you thought you’d seen the back of mathematic formulae since leaving school, you’d be wrong. Because according to a survey exploring the factors that keep workers productive and content, it all comes down to a simple equation:

H = (T9+A8) + (F7+HC6) – B7

Happiness (H), Frolleagues (F), Home comforts (HC), Appreciation (A), Trust (T) and Boredom (B)

It may look like gobbledygook, but balancing these five essential aspects of the working environment will lead to a harmonised team and improved output for the business.

That’s the message from office design company Peldon Rose, which questioned almost 1,000 London office staff about their attitudes towards their job and the workplace. The poll focused on boredom, appreciation, trust, home comforts and ‘frolleagues’ – friendships with colleagues.

The ‘happy office’ formula they came up with gives appropriate weight to each factor based on the strength of responses, and sums up what business owners should do to ultimately make their staff happy.


Survey highlights include:

  • 80 per cent of people say they suffer from seasonally adjusted motivation (SAM) and believe winter negatively effects their mood and productivity
  • 67 per cent feel more motivated in the summer months
  • 70 per cent confess to feeling bored sitting at their desks, while 65 per cent wish they had a wider choice of work spaces to break the monotony
  • 69 per cent have full kitchen facilities in their office, but only 27 per cent said they have quiet zones to escape to
  • 56 per cent feel they are never or only sometimes appreciated in the workplace
  • 58 per cent wish they were more trusted to manage how, where, and when they work
  • 83 per cent count colleagues as friends (frolleagues), with 89 per cent saying they value the friendships


Breaking down the formula

Analysing the responses, Peldon Rose came up with the equation, which represents the following advice for business owners and bosses:

  • Improve motivation – encourage breaks, organise social events and use bright colours on feature walls
  • Counter boredom – provide diverse workspaces, such as sit-stand desks, as well as ping-pong tables and plants
  • Offer home comforts – offer fruit and herbal tea to boost energy, bring in sofas and soft furnishings, and where possible encourage activity by providing bike storage and showers
  • Show your appreciation – invest in tools and technology, as well as training and development

Jitesh Patel, chief executive at Peldon Rose, said: “To create an office that is an oasis of positivity and productivity, apply the Happy Office equation to get through the dark winter months.

“To get the most out of your staff you need to get the most of your office, and that includes using every inch of floor space to offer variety and stimulation. A happy office promotes trust and appreciation and empowers the individual to choose for themselves how best to fulfil their role.”