Is this the best way to produce successful employees?

by L&D03 Jun 2016
The French military leader Napoleon once said “the effectiveness of the army depends on its size, training, experience and morale, and morale is worth more than all the other factors together”.

Substitute the word “army” for “company” and there appears to be much truth to this statement today - if the latest research is anything to go by.

Indeed, a new study has found a clear link between satisfied workers and the financial success of an organisation.

The study involved Danica Bakotić of the University of Split, Croatia, looking at the performance of 40 large and medium-sized Croatian companies using 10 different financial indicators, including earnings, labour costs and return on assets. 

Bakotić also issued questionnaires on job satisfaction to nearly 6000 of their employees, quizzing them on 11 different aspects of their work, including pay, job security, hours and management. Their overall job satisfaction was the average value of all the factors put together.

The findings showed strong evidence that a company with more satisfied employees is also more likely to be successful.

"It could be stated that job satisfaction more strongly determines organisational performance than organisational performance determines job satisfaction," said Bakotić.

The research is published in the journal Economic Research-Ekonomska Istraživanja, and offers important lessons for managers and business owners keen to get it right for both workers and shareholders.

So the question then becomes how to keep employees happy?

Some methods which companies are using include sit-stand desks and mindfulness training.

The latter results in employees feeling better and on top of their work, instead of that feeling of despair due to being overwhelmed, according to Murray Paterson, Head of Learning and Development at the law firm Herbert Smith Freehills.

L&D Professional also recently spoke to Shirley Cheong, Assistant Vice President, People Team, Changi Airport Group, about how the company ensures employees are enjoying themselves during L&D.

“We believe in learning through play and we weave fun into training activities, sometimes in unexpected ways to create a positively surprising experience,” said Cheong.

“Puzzle-solving games, in-class mobile pop-quizzes, and competitions are some of the ways we have incorporated fun into training activities.

“For example, groups compete to build and launch paper aeroplanes in one leadership program, or draw a picture to tell a story in another.”
Related stories:

Why mindfulness works wonders 

Do sit-stand desks really have health and productivity benefits? 

How one award-winning company puts the fun in L&D