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7 Human Hacks That Make Teams Happier and Productive

Adi Assaf

It’s important to keep your employees happy, happy means productive, you know that, your employees know that, everyone knows that…

But what are you doing about it?

Just wanting happy, productive employees won’t make so, right?

Employees in tech have the lowest tenure on average, three years on average in the US according to a recent poll. As someone who’ve been around the Israeli market for years, I can tell you that in Israel it’s way lower.

A lot of managers are constantly trying and failing to create a work environment that is both happy and productive.

At this point, you’re probably asking yourself “why is that?”

My experience showed me clearly that it happens because they separate happy from productive, when in fact, one derives from the other.

Happiness fuels productivity because you feel connected to what you do, and you want more of that awesome happy feeling.

And productivity? Well, you guessed it right, it fuels happiness because it makes you feel accomplished providing you with small wins throughout the day. These small wins are the foundation on which you score big wins, and when big wins arrive? Everyone gets a huge dose of happiness!

So how can you tap into that endless loop of happiness and productivity? Here’s my secret sauce:


#1 Integrate diversity into the team

A diverse team, is a smarter team and is the ultimate hack. Diversity introduces magic and possibilities to the daily lives of team members. They’re able to grow because they’re exposed to new teammates, with new ideas. This allows them to break their own limits and motivates them to go the extra mile.

One might argue that diversity is distracting, too much excitement in the office, maybe even more conflicts. These statements are not true of course, workplace diversity improves employee productivity and distractions can be fun.


#2 Ask where they’d rather work from?

Some employees have kids, some employees love the comfort of their home screens, and some employees like to take it easy with a cup of coffee in their local coffee shop. That’s why you need to diversify a bit, to offer employees from time to time to work from home or establish a tradition in which you change the work environment once a week.

This will increase productivity and happiness, guaranteed.

They might not take you on your offer, but they’ll feel empowered by your trust in them, which will make them happy with the life choices they’ve made, i.e., working with you.



#3 Company culture effects both happiness and productivity, and it’s easy to hack it

When employees work in an uninspiring environment, their performance peeks once they get out of the office. It’s not because they don’t have plans or dreams, it’s because their hopes and dreams are not a part of the office culture, they’re located elsewhere.

It’s our job, to help them do their job, and that means creating an environment that will function both as their home away from home, and their main base of operations. The only way to do that is to make them a part of your office culture, and that might mean even changing it from time to time.


#4 Practice transparency, especially when you’re one on one

If you’re letting your employees in on company decisions, and you’re asking for opinions, you might be surprised of the wealth of knowledge and insights you’ll bump into. Transparency has adhesive properties on employees which are amplified considerably when it’s practiced in 1 on one encounters.

Employees who feel apart of the processes happening in the company are happy and way more productive than employees who are just there to perform that one.


An Employee Value to the Organizations over Time © Bersin by Deloitte


#5 Employee engagement is key

This graph shows clearly that the employee’s level of engagement is key in increasing their bottom line over time.

Engagement reduces turnover, it improves performance over time, and it draws other less motivated employees in because we all want to connect and be a part of something bigger than us.

Chimpanzees improve their social status by grooming other chimpanzees, this activity helps them to keep their social status, it reduces their stress hormones, and creates bonds that were not possible otherwise.

When we humans interact with each other, we create social bonds that motivate us to contribute to the success of the group we belong to. Working actively on strengthening these bonds and creating group engagement opportunities helps managers to tap into that pool of social commitment.


#6 Don’t promise, deliver. They need that more than you know

Almost all employees get that promise that “if they perform admirably, they’ll get promoted after an ‘x’ amount of time, work, or after accomplishing certain objectives on the company’s roadmap. The thing is, that even if achieve these milestones, they will have to come into your office and demand a raise or promotion for their hard work.

The question is, why do they have to ask for it?

A manager that surprises his employees with a raise, the notices their achievement, that promotes his employees without them knocking on his door first, can inspire employees like nothing else. Employees love it when their work is getting noticed or appreciated, and they’ll invest their heart and soul in a company that nourishes such an investment.


#7 Have you considered asking them?

Finding out what your employees like, or what can help them perform their tasks better, can increase their workplace satisfaction and their productivity.

By asking these question, you show that you genuinely care about them and their needs, and by giving you an answer, they’re creating a subconscious commitment to the expected results, provided you’ll implement what they suggested.

Once you understand that productivity and happiness are intertwined, you’ll start creating these kinds of hacks on your own, and the possibilities are truly endless.