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Happiness & Work Life

When workers are stressed, anxious, or experience burnout it has implications for your organization. In this section, we present some important statistics which highlight the significance of these issues in Europe today. We also highlight research studies which prove the positive impact of increasing happiness and well-being can have in organizations.

Stress, Burnout, & Absenteeism Statistics

A 2004 EU Commission study shows 28% of salaried workers suffered from stress. This report also mentions that stress accounts for 50% of absenteeism.

In the UK, work days lost due to stress, anxiety, and depression have more than doubled from 1995 to 2001-02 (13.4 million total days lost).

When asked “What pleases you most about your job”, 35% of workers in Europe said “Nothing”.

In Switzerland (2000), 26% of people aged 25-65 suffered from stress often or very often.

The percentage of people on long-term disability because of mental illness has risen from 23% (1990) to 39% (2003) in Switzerland. It is the #1 reason why employees go on long-term disability.

The Cost of Stress, Burnout, & Absenteeism

In 2004, the EU Commission estimated 20 billion Euros was spent on health costs associated with stress among 15 member states.

In 2000, Secretary of State for the Economy estimated that 4.2 billion CHF was spent on health costs for stress in Switzerland.

When workers are absent organizations incur costs such as lost salary (short-term), increased workload (stress) for other employees, decreased productivity, and costs to replace the employee (longer-term).

The greater the percentage of an organization’s workforce that is on long-term disability the greater the organization’s insurance premiums.

Benefits of Cultivating Happiness

When employees are happy they are more:

Satisfied with their jobs (Connolly & Viswesvaran, 2000)

Productive which result in higher performance ratings from their manager and others. (Cropanzano & Wright, 1999)

Likely to go beyond their job requirements to help out fellow workers and the organization. (Donovan, 2000)

Creative and demonstrate the ability to solve highly complex problems. (Isen, 2001)

Likely to generate a positive impact on their customers which was a strong predictor of sales performance and customer      satisfaction. (Tsai & Huang, 2002)

In fact, many companies already know that keeping workers happy can save money. AstraZeneca, which runs various programs to increase the wellbeing of its workforce, reckons it saves £210,000 annually in lower insurance premiums. (The Economist August 28, 2004).

Please contact us to learn more about how our The Art of Happiness at Work program can make a difference in your organization.

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