Data Shows the Benefits of Creating a Healthy Workplace

Last week I spoke of the appallingly low levels of satisfaction (45%) reported by American workers. Of course, you will hear me say that paying attention to the people side of business can make a huge difference not only in worker satisfaction levels, but also in performance. Let me share some persuasive data with you.

Each year the American Psychological Association gives out awards for organizations that are psychologically healthy workplaces. The candidates for the awards are evaluated on their workplace practices for employee involvement, health and safety, employee growth and development, work-life balance, and employee recognition. The categories map very nicely into our six psychological principles for the people side of business.

The companies that win the award show some interesting characteristics. For example, these workplaces had an employee turnover rate of just 11% compared with a 38% national average. There are just half as many employees reporting chronic work stress (18% vs. 36%). The number of employees intending to seek employment elsewhere is only 6% in the healthy workplaces compared with 32% in the average work environment. Finally, the employee satisfaction rate is an incredible 87%.

When your organization pays attention to the people side of business you don’t just get happier, healthier employees. You also get employees who stick around and aren’t looking for new jobs. You save money on hiring and training new employees. You save the costs of complaints and worker dissatisfaction. In short, your bottom line is greatly improved.

And this data doesn’t even begin to get to all the other consequences of a healthy workplace. We would maintain that the healthy workplaces are more creative environments, where product innovation and production are enhanced. These companies would likely have better quality control and customer satisfaction rates.

An organization just works a whole lot better when the people engine is well tuned. It is something that can be done…and it works! You can check out the psychologically healthy workplace awards program at phwa.org.

Tom DeMaio, PhD

www.DeMaioPsychology.com

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