Never give up on happiness

- Worker Happiness

by Vasco Duarte

A while ago Jurgen told me the story of Ivo van Halen and his colleagues at VI Company in Rotterdam, the Netherlands. After they participated in the Management 3.0 course, they decided to actively measure the happiness of everyone in the team. To make it a public thing, they painted a wall with school board paint. With chalk they made a weekly index, everyone in the team had his or her own line with a photo attached. It turned out to work very well and it looked amazing as well.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work for long. The weekly aspect became a bit overwhelming. Although everyone can imagine the sadness caused by ‘My cat swallowed a needle’; it just wasn’t very helpful to the team.

But, and I really like that, instead of giving up they decided to ‘reset’ the whole thing, filtering out the lunch topics to make it more to the point. They now measure their happiness once a month and they use some relevant questions like: ‘Did anyone give you a compliment about your work lately?’ Using the answers, people get points and they made one of their companies’ goals to have at least an average happiness of 7 on a scale of 10. The new version of the Happiness Wall still looks amazing, but it is way more practical.

Smart, isn’t it?

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