Danish CEO and entrepreneur Peer Krogh had one main message for his employees:
”The most important thing is really this:
Have you made someone smile today?
If you have, you’ve done a good job.”
He passed away in 2013, but the company still has that message written in the office and on badges like the one you see above.
What a great example of Leading With Happiness.
We’re back from 2 AWESOME weeks in Shanghai and Austin. It’s just crazy how the interest in happiness at work is growing all over the world.
In Shanghai I spoke at a management seminar for 100 managers from Hermés in the region. Hermés already has a strong focus on employee happiness. They LOVED my talk and are now taking this message to all stores and offices in the region.
In Austin I spoke at the WorkHuman conference, which is essentially all about happiness at work. Other speakers included Simon Sinek and Amal Clooney, so I was extra proud that several people called my speech their favorite from the event :)
My books in very good company at WorkHuman:
The entire team on stage:
Signing books after my talk:
We are constantly blown away by the great work our international partners do to promote happiness at work around the world. Here are just a few recent examples.
PlusConsulting in Israel did a Workplace Happiness seminar for 45 HR managers from leading organizations. They presented a case study of a big retail company that they have been working with for the last 2 years, to train all their managers with leading with happiness tools, and many other happiness tips. They have also been working with the National insurance services’ headquarters to involve positive psychology tools like mindfulness, appreciative inquiry and strengths in their daily routine.
Florian Amstutz of PeopleUp in Switzerland did a presentation on happiness and change management for 120 managers from a company. He had lot of fun and the CEO was really happy with the speech.
TGI Monday in Hong Kong have developed a workshop called Choosing Happiness at work which is dedicated to any employee willing to increase its happiness at work. It includes a lot of videos, good practices examples from caring organizations for Hong Kong FCCIHK – as you can see above, people love it :)
Mush Panjwani from Hong Kong will be going to Pakistan to do the first ever training on happiness at work in that country.
Happy Office from Holland did two sold-out workshops at the Agile India conference.
Nicolai Knudsen had a breakthrough in his work to make the Danish military a happier workplace when he gave a keynote at a conference for the organisation for personal advisors and colleague support, a voluntary organisation within the Ministry of Defense that helps people cope with personal problems, stress, offensive behavior, sexism, trauma and PTSD. The head of the MoD center for workplace environment health and safety was really inspired and had never seen that approach, despite having worked with health and safety in over two decades.
Mari Niwa from Ideal Leaders in Tokyo came up with a new way for coworkers to praise each other. In Japan people are a little shy, so rather than doing it in public, you can put up envelopes for each person and then people can praise you by writing a note and sticking it in your envelope.
Dr. Jenny Brockis recently delivered the closing keynote on Thriving@Work at a huge retail conference in Melbourne which was really well received and she’s now getting many more inquiries about this topic as organisations wake up to the need to improve their employees’ experiences at work to boost productivity, performance and overall happiness.
Paleta Znanj in Slovenia are wrapping up a 2-year project of rebuilding/upgrading organizational culture in one great and very successful small company (up to 20 employees, 25 years on the market) who needed help to cross the gap between financial and organic growth (high profits, low employee satisfaction), and to enter “modern age” of leadership. They helped align the company culture with their current and future needs, to make a shift from being profit oriented culture to being people and client oriented one and so to bring more happiness into their working lives and did analysis, counseling, team buildings, coaching, workshops and introduce a tool/system called the Growth Book.
We finally got a chance to visit Ben and Jerry’s global HQ in Vermont and it was AWESOME. Not only did we get to hear about the company’s mission to create a better world, see how the ice cream is made and visit the famous flavor graveyard – we even saw a man propose to his girlfriend in the middle of a tour. She said yes :)
Here are some impressions from our visit.
Proudly written on the walls: “Business has a responsibility to give back to the community.”
“If it’s not fun, why do it?”
The flavor graveyard is where Ben And Jerry’s celebrate their mistakes by honoring every ice cream flavor that failed. It looked very pretty in the snow. You can also find it online.
This is brilliant – instead of hiding or punishing their mistakes, they celebrate them. Here are 5 reasons why every workplace should do that.
All in all we got a very positive impression of the culture at Ben and Jerry’s. The employees we talked to clearly loved their jobs, they do their utmost to make great ice cream while protecting the environment and also have a mission to create “Linked prosperity” for their entire ecosystem, including suppliers, farmers and the local community. It’s inspiring to see a company so focused on creating a happier world, which is also why their mentioned in my latest book Leading With Happiness.
This awesome Southwest Airlines flight attendant turns her pre-flight safety announcement into a standup comedy act.
In this video Ken Blanchard and Garry Ridge, the CEO of WD-40 Company, explain why employees must come first. What a wonderful, enlightened vision for corporate leadership.
Garry will talk much more about that at our International Conference on Happiness at Work in Copenhagen in May.
This is awesome: Rich Sheridan, the CEO of Menlo Innovations explains why he created a joyful workplace and how joy has business value.
Rich will talk much more about this at our International Conference on Happiness at Work in Copenhagen in May. See the program and get your tickets here.
Solar charging station in Taiwan
Financial Times has a great interview with Frank Appel, the CEO of Deutsche Post DHL the clearly outlines his philosophy for motivating employees: Increasing revenue is a meaningless goal. When company goals are mainly financial, purpose is lost. The best companies are “driven by making the lives of customers easier by highly engaged employees.”
Appel has set up three initiatives for his 522,000 staff:
- Go Teach, where DHL staff educate disadvantaged young people
- Go Help, where they work with the UN to use the company’s logistics expertise to respond co humanitarian crises
- Go Green, where they work to reduce emissions to zero
Appel sums up his message like this:
“We cannot say, listen, ‘Our strategy is to make money and if we have time left then we’ll do something which is good for the society’,” he says.
“Our job is to do something good for the society, and to do that we have to make money, otherwise we can’t continue to invest.”
This is AWESOME. It’s a clear articulation of a philosophy where a company aligns the quest for financial goals with a clear mission to create a better world.
There are many ways to create a happier workplace but this short video has two of the funniest I’ve ever come across: ”Sexy Powersuit Day” and “The Lift of Love.”
If you want more inspiration and tools to promote happiness at work, you should come to our next conference on May 17+18 2018 in Copenhagen – it’s going to be AWESOME.