Five Ways to Lead a Happier Team

“Americans have never been the happiest bunch, Gerzema says. In the nine-year history of the happiness poll, the highest happiness index was 35% in 2008 and 2009. Close to 40% of Americans said in 2017 that they rarely engage in hobbies and pastimes they enjoy…” (Time)

“… 2017 turned out to be the worst year for well-being on record.” (Washington Post)

20 ways to be unhappy:

The following list is given in appreciation of Dostoevsky’s statement, “The greatest happiness is to know the source of unhappiness.”

  1. Focus on what others should do.
  2. Think about yourself most of the time.
  3. Expect others to make you happy.
  4. Move less. Don’t exercise.
  5. Ruminate on things you can’t control.
  6. Spend lots of time on Facebook. (Psychology Today)
  7. Engage in “If only think.” “If only I had a better team.”
  8. Engage in “If then thinking.” “If I get a great job, I’ll be happy.”
  9. Compare yourself with others.
  10. Eat junk food.
  11. Don’t get enough sleep.
  12. Talk about problems, but don’t design solutions.
  13. Replay your screw ups, but don’t learn from them.
  14. Worry about what others think of you.
  15. Wait for permission before you take action.
  16. Speculate about the thoughts of others. (Especially thoughts about you)
  17. Worry about the future.
  18. Try to be happy. (If you want to be happy, forget about being happy. Focus on meaningful service.)
  19. Lose yourself in work and neglect your family.
  20. Don’t include others in your work. Do it all yourself.

5 ways to lead a happier team:

  1. Adopt a community project.
  2. Exercise together. Take walks during lunch.
  3. Learn from mistakes. Ask, “What are you learning?”
  4. Complete something today.
  5. Have a conversation instead of sending an email.

With “20 ways to be unhappy” in mind, what are some ways a leader can elevate the happiness quotient on their team?