- Relationships with co-workers are a leading contributor to employees’ well-being, a new report concluded. Well-being in the Workplace, a three-year international study by Martin Boult, senior director of professional services and international training at The Myers-Briggs Company, found that relationships with co-workers were what matters most to employees’ happiness in the workplace. The report included data from 10,000 people in 131 countries.
- According to the results, well-being improves with age and is comparable overall between women and men, with women being slightly more engaged at work. Workers in service-oriented occupations like education and healthcare reported the highest levels of well-being, while those in jobs like food preparation and production reported the lowest.
- Generally, workplace well-being was tied to higher job satisfaction, commitment to an organization, interest in job tasks and retention.
After relationships with co-workers, the report cited meaning, accomplishments, engagement and positive emotions as the greatest contributors to employees' wellbeing. Employers may want to take note of the report's conclusions; workers in other studies gave similar responses in describing aspects of the job that satisfied them the most, such as meaningful work, recognition for a job well done, volunteer opportunities and causes, and a good relationship with the boss.
Allowing workers to form friendships at work can go a long way in helping employees feel more engaged at work. This could mean, for example, allowing employees to chat about the finale to Game of Thrones, for example, if a five-minute productivity loss could lead to powerful gains later on. Camaraderie can help employees of all backgrounds feel included.
Notably, the report didn't identify money as a major factor in employee well-being. Although less tangible factors were tied to higher job satisfaction, money remains the top incentive for employees and job hunters. HR leaders can use these kinds of reports to gauge employee satisfaction in their own organizations and cultivate a culture of well-being to attract, engage and retain talent.