Wellbeing and Productivity
The link between wellbeing and productivity has long been accepted but the way it happens is full of twists and turns. Many people are unaware that their attempts at wellbeing in the workplace aren't very effective and may even be self-defeating.
The Hawthorne Experiments
A confusing start
In the 1920s a series of important workplace experiments were conducted that established the link between productivity and employee happiness. However it was and remains very controversial how to interpret these experiments. They may well have been faulty but from our point of view, the faults actually generated data that illustrates the positive effect of people's wellbeing on their working life and performance.
Recent Evidence about Mixed Results
Established practices may be self-defeating
With the established link between employee happiness and performance, organisations started to engage in employee satisfaction. In fact, recent research showed that employee satisfaction surveys are one of the most valued executive tools around the world. But there's a catch. In recent years various independent research efforts have shown that common practice contains serious pitfalls. Executives seem unsure how to get results from their employee satisfaction surveys. Some studies show that the common focus on job satisfaction may actually make things worse in some industries. The research points to more reliable results from a wellbeing approach than a satisfaction approach. This new evidence made it clear that more effective approaches are needed.
Action Learning and Positive Psychology
Innovation for practical wellbeing
Innovation combines new concepts with elements of existing, proven technology. This is what the Positive Teams approach does. The new concepts come from the growing body of research produced by the Positive Psychology movement. This movement decided to stop focusing on what people's psychology is like when they are ill so they could study what it's like when they are healthy. The result is a wealth of material on what wellbeing looks like and what steps to take to get there. We have combined this material with established and effective techniques from action learning, team development, business planning, quality improvement and leadership development. The result is a process and set of resources that can set up teams to run a self-managed process to build and maintain their wellbeing. This includes their capacity to address and resolve the challenges of performing as an effective work team.
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