week of happiness

International Week Of Happiness at BPA Quality.

Here at BPA Quality, we want all of our team to feel fulfilled, supported and content at work. Happy employees are productive and motivated to achieve high results. So, with International Week of Happiness at Work currently underway, HR Director Judith Yates looks at how we put people at the heart of all we do.

“The happiest people don’t have the best of everything. They just make the best of everything” – unknown.

I love this quote, it’s so true. I’m very lucky in my job to be surrounded by some fantastic and generally happy people who make the best of everything. So, how do they do it? How can we make sure that we are happy – it doesn’t just happen by itself. Also, who is really responsible for our happiness in the workplace? This is important every day, not just during International Week of Happiness at work, of course.

I believe that it’s up to employers to create the best environment they can for their employees to thrive in. Employees also have equal responsibility for their happiness within that environment. I know that not everything we do is going to please everyone. Although we try to keep everyone happy and seriously consider the impact of our actions at all times.

Behind the scenes

One of my favourite initiatives here at BPA Quality is Happiness Day, which is one extra day we give everyone in addition to their annual leave allowance. This could be to have their birthday off work or just to choose to do something which would make them happy.

We also have some proactive teams including the social committee, the BPA Active Team, the Mental Wellbeing Team or the Green BPA Team.

We also have a monthly ‘Breakfast with Friends’ initiative. This encourages team members to come in a little earlier than usual to enjoy a croissant and a catch up with colleagues from across the business. This has become extremely popular and gives our employees the opportunity to connect with people they wouldn’t necessarily meet with otherwise.

Our Peer to Peer recognition scheme encourages individuals to thank their colleagues for acting in line with our Company Values. This is something that our recent Investors in People assessment rated very highly. Entry into the scheme could win you an additional day of leave, not to mention the lovely little ‘thank you’ or ‘well done’ card you receive from the colleague nominating you. Our employees tell us that they really like opportunity to highlight the great things that people do every day.

We also try to include the practical stuff too – like treats in the office and a ping-pong table in the recreation area. We’re just about to upgrade our kitchen and dining facilities. We always try to involve our employees in these decisions too so we’re meeting their needs.

Employee engagement

But, what can employees do to create a great environment for everyone to work in? I recently read an article from Dr Travis Bradberry on the 11 Habits of Supremely Happy People. They closely reflect the work we’ve been doing here around personal wellbeing. My belief is that wellbeing and happiness are very closely aligned. We’ve been encouraging our employees to:

Connect – with the people around you. Invest time in developing relationships at home, at work and in your community

Keep learning – try something new or take on a new responsibility at work

Be active – exercising makes you feel good so step outside, go for a walk, have a game of ping-pong or maybe cycle to work

Take notice – be aware of the world around you and how you are feeling. Reflecting on your experiences will help you appreciate what matters to you

Give – do something nice for a colleague. Thank them, volunteer your time or just simply give them a smile. Seeing yourself and your happiness as linked to that of your colleagues can be incredibly rewarding

Happiness is not always easy to achieve. But, in the same way that you need to look after your body physically to stay fit, you need to develop some of these good habits that help to make you happy. Life is all about making choices and it is my firm belief that we can choose to be happy – it just takes some positive effort, throughout International Week of Happiness at Work and every week of the year.

Finally, the words of American author Carlos Castaneda put it well by saying: “Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable or happy and strong, the amount of work is the same.

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