HAPPINESS: Smile and get promoted

HAPPINESS:Smile and get promoted

By Aliker David Martin

September 17th, 2011

 He who enjoys doing and enjoys what he has done is happy. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Last week, I received a request on my blog to write on Happiness and achievements. In my reflection I realized while achieving our life’s goals lead to happiness, happiness itself is an important component of achieving our life’s goals. This reflection reminded me of my colleague Othieno (not real name). Othieno was a very hardworking and committed teacher at my first workplace. Othieno worked long hours and so dedicatedly that he won the best staff award of the year. His focus was to be a head-teacher at a young promising age. Subsequently, the School director reshuffled his administration and replaced the deputy head-teacher and the head-teacher in Othieno’s third year of service. While the director acknowledged Othieno’s hard work and dedication he believed he was still so young and needed more experience. Othieno developed attitude and became so negative, he fell off with other staffs that didn’t agree with him and failed to meet deadlines. Othieno fell from grace to grass and lost his job in the third year. Othieno’s experience is what many young employees experience. The question is, “how does happiness lead to promotions at work?”

The greatest workplace threat is the viral infection of negativity. Othieno allowed his attitude to take advantage of him. Trouble likes company, Othieno allowed himself to join the group of disgruntled employees who have given up on being promoted. A continuously negative employee affects the attitude of other employees. To keep happy, an employee has to learn work politics and keep away from negative staffs. Othieno excelled in his earlier years because he loved his job and had a goal. Negativity affected his focus and he lost his dream.

Another reason to keep happy at work is productivity. Employers reward productivity. Therefore, keep happy and become more productive then a promotion will get your way. Researchers such as Thomas Wright from Kansas State University have repeatedly shown that happier workers deliver more products. Now I know why our teachers were given touring trips and staff parties. While the office gossip was that ”only party going staffs get promoted,” the logic was that party going staffs were happy and enjoyed their jobs hence more productive. Othieno avoided staff leisure activities and carried his work home.

Stephen R. Covey asserts that,” our greatest joy and our greatest pain come in our relationship with others”. Othieno developed grudges with many other staffs as a result of his unhappiness. This implies he could no longer be a team player. His frustration made him unable to meet his deadlines. While other happy staff members enjoyed the cooperation of their colleagues and great appraisals from their line managers to guarantee them promotions. Othieno would have enjoyed emotional support from his colleagues when he felt frustrated. This would have eventually made him regain his focus and potentially achieved his goal. We all have low moments at our work place, what is important is not how we fall but how we get up when we fall because we all fall anyway.

Conclusively as you begin a new week at work, keep happy and focus on your goal. Realize that we all have low moments at work but what keeps us going is a good working relationship, keeping ever productive and less negativity to meet deadlines.

NB: As always, mail me what you think or what you want me to write about.