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Empirical research, involving thousands of people from all around the world, tells us this; that employees who report being happiest at work deliver more, stay longer, are less ill and are great brand ambassadors. Moreover, they love what they do and want to do more if it. So, what drives all this? There are five main components (5Cs) that really matter:

Contribution: The Effort You Make

This is about what you do, so it’s made up of some of the core activities which happen at work. Like having clear goals, moving positively towards them, talking about issues that might prevent you meeting your objectives and feeling heard when you do so. You’ll do all this best when you feel appreciated and valued by your boss and your colleagues. So, it’s not just about delivering: it’s about doing that within collaborative working relationships too.

Conviction: Short-Term Motivation

The key point here is that this is the stuff that keeps you going even when things get tough. Key to doing this is feeling motivated, knowing that you’re resilient, and working efficiently and effectively. That will give you the sense that you’re having a positive impact on the world in which you work.

Culture: feeling you fit

Performance and happiness at work are really high when employees feel they fit within their organizational culture. Not fitting in a job is like wearing the wrong clothes to a party – all the time. So it’s hugely draining and de-energizing. If you’re in the wrong job, you’ll find that the values mean little to you, the ethos feels unfair or political and you don’t have much in common with your colleagues.

Commitment: long-term engagement

Commitment matters because it taps into the macro reasons of why you do the work you do. Some of the underlying elements of commitment include knowing that you’re doing something worthwhile, having strong intrinsic interest in your job, and feeling that the vision of your organization resonates with your purpose.

Confidence: self-belief

Confidence is the gateway to the other four drivers. Too little confidence and nothing happens: too much leads to arrogance and particularly poor decisions. Without greater levels of self-belief, the backbone of confidence, there will be few people who get stuff done. And you can’t have confident organizations without confident individuals inside them.

And finally: Trust, Recognition and Pride

These create the context in which the 5Cs are operationalized. Which means that they are vital for leaders to leverage. And it all starts with trust. Trust gets results, which generates recognition and that in turn builds pride.

It’s not rocket science, but it is a science. And it delivers results.

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