The Role Joy Plays in Workplace Morale

Sometimes we get stuck focusing on the deficits in life. We do so at the risk of maximizing and promoting the assets,  or the good things. This is certainly true when it comes to workplace morale.

We all are familiar with the unfortunate realities of today’s workplace. Yet what we don’t promote enough are those leaders who are making work joyful, meaningful, and worthy of the time devoted to employees’ craft.

Consider this as an important example. Rich Sheridan, CEO of Menlo Innovations, a software development company, has articulated the following as the company’s mission:

End human suffering as it relates to technology.

The secret sauce to the company’s mission? It’s joy.

Rich and his team believe that technology should delight the users. It should be a joyful interaction, and not one that triggers the desire for a sledgehammer against the device. Rich and his team focus on what needs to be right between the user and the technology. In fact, they’ve built their business around uncovering what’s right, what’s needed, what’s optimum for a technology’s end users. They exploit the assets to benefit the whole.

Menlo may look to end suffering for its customers, but they do so, too, for their employees. When you enter into The Factory, as they call their workplace, the room is electric with conversation. The energy is a reflection of the eagerness to do good work. The eagerness is an outcome of the morale that the team helps foster. Notice I didn’t say Rich or the other managers. There are none. The team is responsible for its performance. They take the joy-making serious. Once you get a taste of delighting customers, you want more. You want to sustain what is done to create such a joyful outcome.

End human suffering as it relates to technology.

Imagine working for Menlo where you are paid to create joy for others. Furthermore, imagine having a business designed to help you unearth what it takes to create joy. Imagine how you’d feel about the place you work, or the craft you use to generate results. Imagine what your morale level would be knowing that you put a smile on another persons face or made their life easier because of you created.

These are lessons for teams and for organizations. Joy is a human need – we all want joy in our lives. Improve morale by focusing on our basic human needs, like joy, and weave it into your purpose and how you create results. The key here is to marry the purpose and the how. One without the other is merely talk. Talk and no action doesn’t help with workplace morale.

Focus on Doing Workplace Morale Right

In the spirit of promoting what works for businesses regarding workplace morale, Switch & Shift and SmartBrief are partnering again on a special series.

This week we want to positively exploit the ideas or those companies who are doing workplace morale right, like Menlo Innovations, by creating amazing cultures that yield tremendous results. We are eager to learn from those who are doing so now. Here are the participants in this special joint series.

Shannon Alter Susan Strayer LaMotte
Irene Becker Mark Lukens
John Bell
Lori Ann Larocco
Rebel Brown Carleen Mackay
Randy Conley Karen Martin
Peter Cook Jennifer V. Miller
James daSilva Dr. Anne Perschel
Dr. Todd Dewett Allison Rimm
Kristof DeWulf Jacob Shriar
S. Chris Edmonds Lisa Shelley
Mark Fernandes Dr. Ellen Weber
Baron Christopher Hanson 
Workplace Morale 1

Welcome to our Workplace Morale: What Works series!



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Copyright: gladkov / 123RF Stock Photo

Change Leader | Speaker | Writer Co-founder and CEO of Switch and Shift. Passionately explores the space where business & humanity intersect. Promoter of workplace optimism. Believes work can be a source of joy. Top ranked leadership blogger by Huffington Post. The Optimistic Workplace (AMACOM) out 2015

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