13 Ways to Build a Happy And More Productive Workforce

A happy and more productive workforce is a win-win for workers, their bosses, and business owners.

In case you haven’t been reading Inspire to Thrive recently, this is a series of posts on productivity sponsored by Wrike. Did you know having a happy staff can increase your business productivity by 31%?

That’s a pretty high number today especially if you are a small business!

happy and productive workforce
Tips to help you have a happy and productive workforce.

13 Ways to Build A Happy and More Productive Workforce

1. A Fitness Contest

fit-bit for productivityNot only will people feel better they will become healthier. Give away pedometers with your logo so they can track their success.

Whenever possible have a monthly contest and give away fun prizes.

Of course, if you can afford it give them a fit-bit to track their success. They will surely love having these devices to track their steps and even their sleep patterns and more. Having your workers get more sleep will sure boost your workforce’s productivity level.

2. Eating Healthy – Salad Buffet

Offer healthy snacks and lunches at the office. It’s another way to keep your staff healthy and they will also feel better. Equally important, employees that feel better will also work better!

Have healthy vegetables with dip ready in the office cafeteria or refrigerator if you have a small area. Anytime someone gets hungry they can just open the refrigerator for a delicious little snack.

I know I can’t work well when my tummy growls that I am hungry! It can really interfere with my thinking and creativity. Equally important, eating too much can put one into a food coma as well!

Arbonne makes for happy and productive workforce
Eating healthy helps your workforce be more healthy and productive.
Employees that feel better will also work better! Click To Tweet

Don’t forget to stock the coffee! It’s known to be a productivity super drug as well and keeps us alert. Caffeine today also offers a wide variety of health benefits.

3. Lunch Walks

walk for productivityGoing for a walk a lunch can really give people a creative solution during their lunch hour. This is my favorite way to unwind and come up with new ideas.

In fact, there is nothing like a good walk even if just for 20 minutes. Or even better give them a full hour. You may be amazed at the creativity this tactic will offer.

4. Gym Memberships

Finally, if you have the money offer gym memberships at a discount to your employees. They will really appreciate this perk! Furthermore, not many small businesses or even large companies offer this perk today.

It can also cut down on your health care costs and we know how these are soaring today. You may be able to save on some taxes with this one but be sure to consult your tax accountant for this one.

5. Birthday Celebrations Make for a Happy and Productive Workforce

Equally important, these celebrations don’t have to be with cake and ice cream. You can offer delicious healthy varieties of fruits for these!

Birthdays can be celebrated monthly instead of as they arrive. This will keep down the number of office parties but yet recognize everyone’s birthdays. Don’t forget to wish them a Happy Birthday on social media too (if they are there!)


6. Victory Celebrations

Celebrate the little victories. Give employees an hour or two off – they can leave early on a Friday or start later on a Monday. There is nothing better you can offer employees than time off. You can’t buy time with money so it’s really a priceless perk. Furthermore, if it is a big victory you could make it an extra day off.

Celebrating victories shows employees that you recognize the hard work they did to achieve or go over goals that were set for them. This will surely make for a happy and more productive workforce.

There is nothing better you can offer employees than time off. You can't buy time with money so it's really a priceless perk. Click To Tweet

7. Bring Your Pets to Work for a Happy and More Productive Workforce

bring your pets to workOffer a pet-friendly environment. Many people will love this perk! They won’t have to rush home to take care of fido. In the United States alone, 70% of all households own a pet as of 2017 according to the Paw Adviser Blog.

Have you heard that with a dog around collaboration soars in the office? It was a study done by the Economist in 2010.

As a result, you will have to have some room to offer this fabulous perk. You will need an outdoor area for the pets to go out and do their own job!

Have you heard that with a dog around collaboration soars in the office? Click To Tweet

8. Volunteer Programs to Help Others

Did you know people feel better when they help others? This one is a mental boost for all and it truly can help those less fortunate.

Give your employees a day off a month or a few times per year to go volunteer and help out a good cause.

9. Team Building Fun for a Happy and Productive Workforce

Make team building fun for everyone. You can do something simple like scavenger hunts in the office.  Or you could start a bowling team or softball team outside of the office environment.

It really depends on how much time your team members have and what their interests are. Pick something that most of the team will truly enjoy for your team-building activities.

10. Holiday Fun Parties

These can be simple and during the day so workers don’t miss family time at home. Who wants to go out another night with the office crew when they already spend 40 or so hours per week with them?

The parties can be around food or giveaways and awards. Finally, make it a yearly party so they will have something to look forward to next year. (and stick around!)

11. Costume Days for Fun on Fridays

Fun FridaysMake Fridays dress down Friday, that way everyone can wear jeans or fun tee shirts to work.

Let your employees pick themes to get dressed up in and have some fun! It can be holiday attire for the different holidays throughout the year.

Consequently, you could give away some prizes including time off or movie passes for their entire family.

Make it FUN FRIDAY and add some tweets to the day’s events!


12. Weekly Happy Hour

A weekly happy hour can happen an hour before closing time. Be sure to offer some food if you are going to serve alcohol. Not to mention, you don’t want anyone driving home with too much to drink. Keep it light and with plenty of food for a happy workforce!

13. Grow Some Office Plants for a Happy and More Productive Workforce

Last but not least growing office plants is a big productivity boost for office workers! Office plants are known to freshen up the air and actually make people feel better.

This one will surely make for a happy and more productive workforce. It’s known that office plants can increase office productivity by 15%.

It's known that office plants can increase office productivity by 15%. Click To Tweet


This Infographic below is brought to you by Wrike web project management software.

13 Ways to Build a Happy & More Productive Workforce - by Wrike project management software

Finally, what are you doing today to produce a happy and more productive workforce at your office or small business? I’d love to know more in the comments about what would make you happier at work.

  • Thank you for providing these strategies to build a greater workforce.

  • Steve says:

    Hello, Lisa. I like the idea of bringing pets to the office. Having a pet close to you can also bring other benefits like lowering stress and blood pressure. I would also recommend jumping on a trampoline. It doesn’t take much time and it definitely makes me feel better 🙂

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Steve, welcome to Inspire to Thrive. Yes, pets can surely keep you calm. I love the idea of the trampoline – exercise and I imagine that would cool you off if you get stressed out too 🙂 Thanks for your input! Have a great day and new week.

  • Paul Towers says:

    In my opinion the best companies/most productive workplaces understand the important of flexibility. Flexibility in terms of work hours, dress style, and how and where people work within the building (flexible workplaces)

    That, plus just letting staff get on with doing the job instead of micromanaging them.

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Paul, oh yes, flexibility is certainly a must today. People don’t like to be told what to do, where to do it and what to wear, etc. Anything to let them do their own job and be more creative I think is a plus plus. Thanks for coming by on this one Paul and have a great day!

  • Binod Jha says:

    Hi! Lisa
    I think you should have to be a psychologist.
    All your tips are very useful that most companies are not focusing.
    As a blogger when I feel bored and take a break and go out with friends and party harder that help me to refresh the mind.
    Thanks! again

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Binod, welcome to Inspire to Thrive. LOL 🙂 Yes. Do feel bored or overwhelmed by the blogging? I know if I sit too long I have to get up and move around to get refreshed! Thanks for coming by and have a great day.

  • Enstine Muki says:

    Hi Lisa,
    I was a consultant for a company with over 830 workers. The guy who has the company was really concerned about the social life of his staff.

    One of the things he did which got me really excited was that every Thursday starting 15 hours, the company’s main working space would become a gymnasium. He hired trained PE experts for serious and effective PE for his staff.

    Yes, at one point, the ladies would talk and compare how much weight they have lost 😉

    Great and helpful business growth content here from Wrike

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Enstine, Wow, that is really cool! I’d love to have that perk. I imagine how much that would make the workers feel better both physically and mentally. Thanks for sharing about there here Enstine, and have a great day.

  • Hassaan Khan says:

    Hi Lisa,

    Can I add one more?

    “Movie Night”

    I love this one. We used to host movie nights at our university, and it was fun.

    I think I’d love movie night at an office once a month.

    Doesn’t it seem relaxing already?

    I don’t have employees at the moment, but when I’d have people working for me, I’d certainly do this and share pictures in a blog post.

    Excellent blog post, Lisa.

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Hassaan, I like that one! Movie night it is. It does sound relaxing for sure. Been a while since I’ve been to one at the theatre 🙂 Thanks for coming by and for your input on this one. Have a great day.

  • Hii
    Happy to read this post. This time, you have come with an unique post and that’s great. The tips you have listed in this post will surely help to increase the productivity in the work space. I like all your tips, especially – tip no. 2,3,6,7,10,11 and 13. And, the infographic is so beautiful and it makes your post more compelling.

    Thanks for sharing.
    Praveen Verma

    • Lisa says:

      Thank you Praveen. Do you have one favorite? I think mine would be the hour walk. But having a dog around comes close as well. These can work for the home office too. I appreciate your coming by and taking the time to comment!

  • Moss Clement says:

    Hi Lisa,

    The idea of having a fitness centre is great indeed as it helps to bring together your force of a common purpose as well create an avenue to get to know each other well and also help to build a strong bond in the office. Time is precious as you already know, so giving employees times off is great as it help to energize your workforce. All other tips are incredibly great because they all will help create a more productive working environment.

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Moss, I used to have one at a company I worked at years ago. It was great to get exercise and meet others at the large company it once was. I always prefer time off over the extra dollar. You can’t buy back time! Thanks for coming by on this one Moss and have a nice day!

  • Brad Lindsey says:

    Hey Lisa!

    I like a lot of ideas that you listed here. I really haven’t been in the general workforce for quite some time, but having a weekly happy hour meetup would be fun! Let’s all meet in the middle of the country…say Chicago?

    I could really use a gym membership right about now, to get me off this computer and out of the house!

    Any takers out there??

    I worked with a client that always had her dog in the office, and thought that was way cool:)

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Brad, I like that idea, meet in Chicago 🙂 Just get out and walk. I prefer walking over a gym to get the fresh air and smell the flowers. I come across quite a few offices now that have dogs in them. I think these could easily apply for a home office as well Brad. You are most welcome and have a good day and great rest of the week there.

  • I love 1-3 Lisa but all work for me. When I did work the 9-5 bit I often took walks at lunch time to add to my fitness. I guess now that I think of it I was highly obsessed with fitness and didn’t need the 30 minute walk LOL. Sometimes I worked out for 2-3 hours a day during my employee days because I was a fitness model at the time. Part time.

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Ryan, thank you. That’s why you do 10 miles now, huh? I wish I had more time for walking but have been doing some since the weather got better here. It really does make a difference in your mental attitude and promotes creativity! Thanks for coming by Ryan and enjoy the rest of your week.

  • Hi Lisa – thanks for stopping by my blog – I thought I’d pop over and say Hi back to you. I work for a surgeon (no pets in our office unfortunately!) and most of the ideas you have won’t work for me – but I do love celebrating successes and birthdays – anything that makes the day brighter and happier works for me!

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Leanne, that was quick! Welcome to Inspire to Thrive. Do you have office plants there? I see those in many medical offices around here. Yes, making the day brighter and happier at work is a win-win Leanne. Thanks for coming by and have a wonderful day ahead 🙂

  • [ Smiles ] Lisa, I love the part about growing office plants at the workplace, because green has a very calming effect upon one’s nervous system.

    Now, I doubt that most businesses are going to allow their employees to bring their pets to work; unless it is a pet shop.

    I am all for the Weekly Happy Hour!

    By the way, those are all good tips in providing a happy workforce.

    • Lisa says:

      Thank you Renard. Oh yes, it certainly does. I also love the bring your pets to work for better collaboration! We sort of knew it but to see the research behind it really proves it! These tips do work for home offices too. Thank you for coming by Renard and have a great Monday and new week!

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