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Work happiness

The reason we created the Work-Happiness report

The reason we created the Work-Happiness report
February 2023

This is what happens when you think about Work-Happiness: A report is born.

Did you actually know that the first report wasn't originally meant to be about Work-Happiness (the happiness at work)? 🤯 I didn't know that either. That's why in this post, we'll take a peek behind the scenes together. Julia and Tobias give us insight into the creation of the Work-Happiness Report and answer my questions.

💡 This is an interview with Julia (CMO at awork) and Tobias (CEO and Co-Founder.)

We'll talk about:

Why does awork even concern itself with Work-Happiness?

Julia: "It's already in our brand slogan, 'for the joy of work.' Our mission is to help teams collaborate better and be happier. We want to motivate teams to create a happy work environment themselves – and lead by example with our own team's happy collaboration."

Tobias: "We see work as a part of life, which is why we don't talk about Work-Life Balance, where work and life are seen as opposing things. Instead, we talk about Work-Life Integration. It's not always about a sharp separation, but about the compatibility of things that make us happy. The results of the first and second editions confirm that our understanding of modern work is on the right track."

What does awork as a product have to do with Work-Happiness?

Julia: "We know from our customers and our own team the factors that can make work quite frustrating: dysfunctional communication, opaque processes, micromanagement, and more. Poor organization and communication barriers lead to spending half the day on planning and admin hassle – and that's where our product comes in."

Tobias: "We believe that good work organization and modern technology contribute significantly to creating an environment where everyone enjoys working. An environment where team organization works well and is even fun, so you spend less time on planning hassle and more time on good ideas."

What's the goal of the Work-Happiness Report?

Tobias: "Good organization alone doesn't lead to happiness. Besides modern technology and good work organization, there's also the knowledge of how to make work happiness possible. In many companies, workplace happiness is still underestimated or misunderstood. We want to change that. That's why we launched the Work-Happiness Report in 2022."

awork's annual Work-Happiness Report examines the current state of work happiness among knowledge workers.

Julia: "We were already familiar with the organizational aspect. What contributes to happy collaboration for knowledge workers is what we wanted to find out, by speaking with real people. We wanted to know exactly where the major obstacles lie that prevent teams from collaborating happily. And how we can develop our own team as an example. So, it made sense to dig deep into these questions."

What's the difference between the 1st and the 2nd report? What has changed?

Tobias: "The first Work-Happiness Report was our entry into a more detailed examination of work happiness. We took an exploratory approach to figure out the big themes that concern knowledge workers: What are the happiness factors? What are the stress factors? How happy are people in their jobs, in general? In the second edition of the report, we teamed up with Prof. Dr. Ricarda Rehwaldt from Happiness and Work. Ricarda is a professor of psychology with a research focus on work happiness at IU International University of Applied Sciences. This allowed us to dive deeper into the insights from 2022 and establish the scientific foundation to release our report regularly in the future. A sort of IFO index of Work-Happiness."

Julia: "The first Work-Happiness-Report highlighted that work happiness is not only important for employees but also for companies. In the second report, we delved into how work happiness can be shaped. Therefore, we placed a much stronger focus on practical measures that teams can implement directly. We've intensely dealt with topics like team culture and collaboration, having spoken with thousands of teams and understanding the struggles. This allowed us to derive tips from both scientific findings and our experience, promoting work happiness."

How is such a report actually created?

Tobias: "Together with our scientific partner Prof. Ricarda Rehwaldt, we developed a draft of the questions based on the first report and her research results. This draft particularly emphasizes the practical implications of work happiness in teams. This time, we didn't only want to explore backgrounds, but especially focus on the consequences and action options for teams."

Julia: "Our market research partner Appinio conducted the study with over 1,000 knowledge workers. This was followed by an intensive analysis and evaluation of the results together with Ricarda. Alignment was particularly important to us, to bring together the scientific insights with practical tips. Then came the text and design process, so the report would look the way people see it on their screens. Multiple individuals worked on it, and finally, our marketing and press teams made the report available."

How did the idea for the Work-Happiness Report come about?

Julia: "The initial idea for the first Work-Happiness Report stemmed from our work on the brand slogan, 'for the joy of work.' We spent several months delving into where we wanted to take the brand and what we wanted to stand for. It was clear to us: With awork, we want to make teams happy. That's our mission. Hence, we wanted to learn more about work happiness. We wanted to survey real people, knowledge workers in office jobs. Luckily for us, Appinio and awork were office neighbors at that time. It was pretty cool for us that we could just knock on their door with our idea."

Tobias: "We wanted to gain a deeper understanding of what makes people happy at work, how a work environment must be created for everyone to enjoy working, and how 'joy of work' actually comes to be. Because the insights were so valuable to us, we wanted to share them. And that's what we did with the first edition of the report: The Work-Happiness Report was born. We honestly didn't expect such great interest from the press. It was reported in t3n magazine, heise, IT-Business, and even SAT.1 morning show. It showed that there was a demand, and that's why we went into the next round."

Julia: "Before we tackled the first report, we actually wanted to evaluate something completely different. 😅 We initially wanted to conduct a study on remote work during COVID-19. In our domain, that was certainly a relevant topic. We all know the impact the pandemic had on the working world: digital work, remote, and hybrid work were special topics in recent years. However, we abandoned the idea because many other studies were conducted during that time, answering our questions. Nevertheless, a small part of the first report still covers this topic."

One last question:

Whom would you recommend the 2023 Work-Happiness Report to?

Both: "All those involved in teams and knowledge work industries. Anyone interested in building sustainable excellent teams, especially those working in creative and innovative industries."

So, if you haven't read the report yet, you can download it directly.

[.b-related-article] Read the Work-Happiness-Report [.b-related-article]

Thank you both very much!

The interview was conducted by Jasmin, Content Marketer at awork. ✌️

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