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What seven factors make companies more productive and employees happier? - Barking up the wrong tree

Stashed in: #happiness, Culture, Business Advice, Productivity, MassiveMultiCore, Awesome, Company Building

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Study of the inner work lives of over 12,000 employees...

I define your seven factors as seven of my stashes.

1. Mission: Set clear goals.

People have better inner work lives when they know where their work is heading and why it matters.

2. Leadership: Encourage autonomy.

Setting clear goals can backfire if it amounts to nothing more than telling people what to do and how to do it... If management generally overrides people’s decisions, they quickly lose motivation to make any decision, which severely inhibits progress.

3. Goals: Provide resources.

Providing resources has a twofold positive effect on inner work life. Not only does it allow employees to envision success on a project, but it also signifies that the organization values what they are doing.

4. Productivity: Give enough time. But not too much!

In general, then, low-to-moderate time pressure seems optimal for sustaining positive thoughts, feelings, and drives...

5. Management: Help with the work.

Employees left entirely to their own devices, without any assistance or support from someone else, accomplish very little—they need help. Help can take many forms, from providing needed information, to brainstorming with a colleague, to collaborating with someone who is struggling...

6. Kaizen: Learn from problems and successes.

We found that inner work life was much more positive when problems were faced squarely, analyzed, and met with plans to overcome or learn from them... Our participants’ thoughts, feelings, and drives fared better when successes, even small ones, were celebrated and then analyzed for knowledge gained.

7. Creativity: Allow ideas to flow.

We found that ideas flowed best when managers truly listened to their workers, encouraged vigorous debate of diverse perspectives, and respected constructive critiques—even of themselves. When this crucial catalyst was missing or inhibited—when managers shut down debate or harshly criticized new ideas—people seemed to shrink into themselves.

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