Happiness at work improves bottom line

Happiness at work improves bottom line

Few employers seem to know happiness improves bottom line

CanWest News Service

Published: Tuesday, October 23, 2007

TORONTO — Only six per cent of Canadians and 10 per cent of workers everywhere believe senior management treats people as if they are the most important part of the organization, says a new survey.

The poll of nearly 90,000 workers worldwide, including 5,000 Canadians, shows “employees do not believe their organizations or their senior management are doing enough to motivate them to go the extra mile at work and contribute to their companies’ success.”

Toronto-based Towers Perrin, a consultants’ group, linked firms’ financial results to their employees’ desire to become “engaged” in their work or “go that extra mile to help their company succeed.”

Firms with the highest percentage of engaged employees collectively increased operating income by 19 per cent and earnings per share by 28 per cent year-over-year. Companies with the lowest percentage of engaged employees showed year-over-year declines of 33 per cent in operating income and 11 per cent in earnings per share.

“It is impossible to overstate the importance of an engaged workforce on a company’s bottom line,” said a Towers Perrin spokesman.

Only 23 per cent of Canadians and 21 per cent of employees worldwide told the poll they felt engaged; 32 per cent of Canadians were partly to fully “disengaged.”

The results come as Canada’s unemployment rate dips below six per cent for the first time in 33 years, making it easy for unhappy employees to find another job. Only one-third of Canadians polled had no plans to change their current jobs, but about 52 per cent of the 23 per cent of Canadians who felt engaged at work planned to stay with their current employers.

About 90 per cent of workers in Canada, and 84 per cent globally, said they enjoyed “challenging work that allows them to learn new skills.”