The Science of Happiness in the Workplace - The Edge from the National Association of Landscape Professionals

We recently updated our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use this website, you acknowledge that our revised Privacy Policy applies.

The Science of Happiness in the Workplace

Did you know by practicing small positive habits you can increase happiness in yourself and your entire team?

Certain types of happiness can drive your team’s engagement, motivation, enthusiasm and willingness to put in the extra effort.

Eric Karpinski, author of Put Happiness to Work: 7 Strategies to Elevate Engagement for Optimal Performance, will be presenting on the value of positive habits that increase happiness and how leaders can increase employee engagement with happiness during his sessions at Leaders Forum 2022, on Jan. 21, 2022.

“All the benefits you get with engagement, you can drive that by really focusing on happiness, their happiness and your own,” Karpinski says.

These sessions on happiness are particularly relevant after going through several stressful years.

“People are not their emotional best right now and haven’t been for a couple years and we need to be proactive about creating more positive emotions for our teams and for ourselves,” Karpinski says. “We’ve been in reactive mode.”

He says owners need to be proactive about taking care of their people and making sure they have the best tools to create more happiness for themselves.

“Not only is that the right thing to do for our people, but it will also help us be more productive, help our teams be more engaged and moving forward,” Karpinski says.

No matter the external circumstances, there are things that we can do individually and with our teams to find happiness. There are always good things we can focus on. Gratitude and appreciation are huge themes. Social connection is another powerful happiness strategy.

“When we feel like we’re part of something and we’re part of a team that’s going to keep working and support us and that we can support each other, we’re going to feel a lot more energy to move forward,” Karpinski says.

These practices are research-proven to be the strongest drivers of happiness and can increase empathy as well.

“We are a tribal species,” Karpinski says. “We need social connections to make things happen and to be happy. The only common thing that helps people be happy, and determines whether or not we’re going to have a happy, full meaningful life is the strength of our relationships.”

Karpinski says it’s important for leaders to practice these happiness strategies as well as you can’t help other people be happy if you aren’t taking care of yourself as well.

“These sessions will have a number of habits, that of which they could choose one or two, one for themselves, and one or two new habits they could do with their teams to help their teams get more socially connected, help their teams find more appreciation and what to appreciate,” Karpinski says.

He will also help attendees understand what causes positive emotions and what actions they can do to create more positive emotions with their teams. Karpinski stresses that expressing happiness is not just running down the hall high-fiving people. Leaders need to find a way to express themselves that fits with their personality and fits with the people they’re working with.

You need to be able to care about your employees as people and if you don’t feel that way, Karpinski will go over several habits that will help you see them as people and not just cogs in the wheel.

“If we have that caring, then our efforts are going to come across as authentic,” Karpinski says. “If we don’t have that caring, and all we’re really doing is just putting on a facade in order to get people to be more productive, people are good BS detectors. They’re going to know.”

If you want to attend Karpinski’s sessions on happiness, register for Leaders Forum now. Leaders Forum will take place Jan. 19-22, 2022 at the Arizona Biltmore in Phoenix, Arizona.

Jill Odom

Jill Odom is the content manager for NALP.