If you’re new to positive psychology or thinking about how you can implement it on a practical level in your workplace, you’ve come to the right place. Unlike traditional psychology it doesn’t focus on dysfunction, what’s broken or what’s not working. Nope. By looking at what works it aims to create more of it. Positive psychology is a new, science backed paradigm that will enable your team to flourish, optimise performance and even, wait for it, feel happier at work. We show you how.
Step 1 To Introduce positive psychology at work: Recognise that people matter.
Your people are more than just that. They’re awesome and they are the most important resource that you have. Recognising that is your first step towards creating a culture shift and making it one of your values. The Australian Psychological Society https://www.psychology.org.au/publications/inpsych/2011/april/cotton/ in their research looking at positive psychology at work found “To be successful, it seems that interventions must achieve a substantial change in team based behaviours that inform the way that people work together.” That change has to start at the top. When people feel that they matter, it impacts motivation, productivity and engagement.
Step 2 To Introduce positive psychology at work: HERO Capabilities
Yes, we know you’re all heroes at heart but this HERO is different. These are the capabilities that you’re aiming to develop in your workforce.
Hope – a positive state and belief in their capacity to achieve goals
Efficacy – self efficacy or the ability to successfully complete a task
Resilience – the capacity to manage the demands placed upon them. The ability to bounce back after failure or error.
Optimism – known as positive psychological capital that organisations can measure and develop to improve performance.
Help staff to identify self limiting beliefs and work on them by setting regular goals. Once those goals are in motion, think about how you intend to learn from failure or errors as an organisation. Model behaviour that openly admits and analyses failure in a non judgemental way. Make it part of your culture. Encourage mastery rather than perfection first time. A real hero recognises that matters is a journey rather than a quick sprint. Feedback, sharing ideas and problem solving as a team will contribute to the development of self efficacy and set your staff well on the way to becoming real life HEROES.
Step 3 To Introduce positive psychology at work: Meaning or Purpose
In order to thrive in the workplace we need meaning. Check in with your staff to see how you can match their personal objectives with your organisational goals. The work of Dan Pink outlines how this is closely linked to motivation, mastery and autonomy. Give your team stretching developmental opportunities enabling them to get into flow.
If some of your team are disconnected from the final outcome of your organisation, as some of our clients are, find a way to connect them. Hold inter – department visits or introduce employees to end – users where possible during induction. Knowing where they sit in an organisational context will outline the bigger picture for your employees, highlighting why they’re doing what they do each day.
Want to know more? Check out our fab, free, comprehensive positive psychology toolkit. Thinking about implementing positive psychology at work or delivering positive psychology at work training? Get in touch. We’re experts in the field having worked with Spotify, the NHS, Teenage Cancer Trust and the Natural History Museum. We’re happy to share our expertise with you and talk about how positive psychology could transform your workplace.