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Happy working environment enhances productivity, positivity and strengthens satisfaction of employees and customers

​Image: Tariq Al Janahi - Deputy Executive Director

Happiness Executive Directors in government authorities have confirmed to "Al-Bayan" that a happy work environment enhances the productivity of employees and their positive work. They believe that this environment strengthens employees' values of institutional loyalty and their endeavor to achieve customer happiness.

Tariq Al Janahi, Deputy Executive Director of Dubai Statistics Centre, the CEO of Happiness and Positivity in DSC, expressed his deep belief in the principle that those who wished to make others happy, shall begin with themselves and their employees and provide them with a positive, happy and motivating work environment for achievement and creativity, as the relationship between employee productivity and happiness is a close, linear relationship.

Al Janahi said: "DSC has therefore attached great importance to the quality of work and the happiness of its staff, which is clearly reflected in their productivity and institutional loyalty and their pursuit of the happiness of the various groups concerned, since happiness is fully associated with positivity, and cannot be separated or even kept apart from each other. Happiness and positivity is a culture, knowledge and lifestyle that every institution must establish among its staff members, and even go further through the dissemination of a culture of happiness and positivity of the various groups concerned and of the whole spectrum of society."

He added, "The culture of happiness is mainly based on the love of doing and giving, striving for the happiness of others, and giving thanks, gratitude and appreciation to others, and on other positive values such as respect, justice, ... etc. Also, happiness requires the enhancement of some skills of staff such as mental vigilance and emotional intelligence. Institutions have to monitor the levels of happiness of different groups concerned continuously, through the tools measuring happiness, such as opinion polls and questionnaires, while those measurements should be conducted according to scientific methodologies that ensure the accuracy of their output and indicators".

He stressed that DSC had initiated the formation of a "Happiness and Positivity Board", which included staff of all categories and functional levels, representing 17% of DSC's total staff who are responsible with ensuring that all DSC legislation, policies, programs and plans are adapted to make staff, clients, society, and all relevant groups happy and positive. In addition, he called for embracing and adopting innovative initiatives, programs and various plans that promote corporate happiness and enhances work environment positivity and happiness, as well as the follow-up of institutional performance with respect to the indicators of happiness and positivity internally and externally periodically.

DSC has also adopted and implemented the "Leadership Charter", which aims at promoting a culture of excellence among staff, providing infrastructure and an enabling work environment that enhances creativity, innovation and the direct dealing of leaders with all relevant groups, as well as committing themselves to achieving their happiness and collaborate with them, contributing to the realization of their vision of "a supportive statistics for the generation of happiness and sustainable development".

He added, "Everyone knows that DSC has won the best Government Entity Award for five consecutive years in corporate happiness, within Dubai Government Excellence Program, making a record number in 2016, where the employee's happiness rate was 97%, in addition to receiving numerous global and local awards in the area of corporate happiness, corporate harmony and work environment, and achieving global, regional and local record numbers.

Productivity

Mohammed Hamdan Bin Jarsh Al-Suwaidi,  Executive Director of Happiness in the UAE Writers and Novelist Union, saw positivity as an important input for productivity and creativity, noting that the State has focused on human building and knowledge because, in our time, only those who has knowledge are eligible for competition and leadership. When the directive to appoint an executive head of happiness in each institution came, the UAE Writers and Novelist Union was responsive and it was one of the first entities to appoint immediately.

The choice of the the UAE Writers and Novelist Union of bin Jarsh as the Executive Director of happiness was due to having his own constructive initiative, being a researcher, a writer and a professional human development trainer, and a member of the Secretariat for Emirates Innovation Forum (GCC) seventh session, awarded the Distinguished Employee of the Sharjah Government 2003-2004 , Ambassador of the Friends of Arthritis Patients Association and the Board of Directors of the Sharjah Development Forum. He is also a member of the Board of the Association for the Protection of Arabic language and member of the board of Directors of Sharjah Cultural Sports Club, chairman of the Cultural and Community Committee of the club from 2013 to 2016, and member of the board of Directors of student parents in Sharjah City. He also graduated from the first class of Tatweer program for preparing young leaders in Sharjah. He holds the Sharjah Award for volunteer work, in the category of individuals in the cultural field. It was his initiative to design a library in the form of the word 'Read' in Arabic.

Bin Jarsh is putting forward ideas and initiatives that may induce change in society. They are also keen in the Writers' Union to organize courses and lectures on constructive reading that brings happiness and changes how a person looks upon themselves and life. He affirms that an educated person must be a giver, not waiting for something in return, and that simply when a person links  their being to giving, and utilizing their skills and abilities to help others, they are happy and feel a positive energy.

He stated that the greatest protection of one's soul is to purge it from selfishness and to ensure instilling beautiful values in children, including giving and happiness, so that our society becomes loving, harmonious and capable; thus able to overcome obstacles. He added that the UAE people learned from Zayed school, may he rest in peace, the meaning of giving and positivity. "We are looking for challenges to turn them into achievements, as there is no place for negativity. The proof to that is that we live in an advanced, youthful and cohesive homeland, transcending all obstacles; hence imagination has turned into reality and we have become an advanced country.

We will continue on the path of positivity and giving and we are keen to instil the concept of happiness, to establish advanced initiatives that are in line with the strategy of the State according to each institution and its abilities and skills; also, everyone has to be proactive and generous in their thinking.

Priority

Aisha Alderby, Happiness Executive Director in the Ministry of Community Development, explained that the Ministry has paid great attention to the creation of many programs and initiatives that promote the concept of happiness of all employees in the the Ministry, as well as the customers who benefit from the many services it provides. She pointed that  these initiatives vary in their targets and results, depending on the goal set by the Ministry's development plans.

She added that the Ministry's programs for happiness and positivity have been activated through a plan that contains programs that promote happiness and positivity in all units and departments affiliated with the ministry in all UAE. She also explained that these initiatives will be implemented through the happiness team and its administrators in each organizational unit at the State level.

She stated that these programs would include workshops and training sessions to promote happiness and positivity and to eliminate all negative aspects that may hinder the pace of daily work, and that these programs will be directed to staff and customers using the services of the Ministry.

She added that there was a program to address staff health and to overcome the challenges that they might face which may affect their professional performance. This program is called "Health is Happiness". She also referred  to another program called Sports is Happiness, which seeks to create multiple events that motivate staff to pay attention to sports, especially as they reflect positively on their productivity, leading to feeling permanent and renewed activity.

Alderby pointed out that there is another program called "Renew your Life" which is aimed at employees and their families. It includes some of the events that change from the daily pace of life and work to promote positive aspects and the good relationships between families of employees.

She referred also to the "coffee with an official" program, where specific days are set for meetings between staff members and their superiors, during which the challenges are identified and attempts are made to overcome them flexibly and easily, as well as forge a closer relationship within the one working group.

Concept

For his part, Marwan Al Muhairi, chief executive of Happiness in the Municipal and Planning Department of Ajman, said that his Department pays great attention to its external audiences and customers through the launch of initiatives that make them happy. The Department inaugurated the service of Customer Happiness Center, making smiles its slogan of work. The Center embraces human cadres capable of dealing with all groups and segments of society, as the customers' happiness and satisfaction is the goal they seek.

Al Muhairi pointed out that the concept of happiness is broader and more comprehensive; it is the contentment you see in the eyes of people. "We seek to see individuals truly happy in their practical, academic and family lives and that they enjoy internal and external security and stability, therefore, our government seeks to make happiness a way of life and a daily approach in all its dealings".

He added, "We in the Department of Municipal Affairs, Ajman, are fortunate to have such a leader. The pioneering directions of Sheikh Rashid bin Humaid al-Nuaimi, head of the Department, aim to please staff, customers and all members of society, as our Department  is an institution of happiness that seeks to simplify procedures, facilitate reviewers' job, provide recreational services to staff and motivate them to work hard".

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