5 Simple Ways to Boost Employee Happiness: Building A Better Workplace in SME Businesses

Published 21. 2. 2024

In big corporations, there's a trend of hiring happiness managers to ensure employee satisfaction. While this might seem extravagant for smaller businesses, it's worth noting that happier teams are more productive, regardless of company size, and any effort you put into employee happiness is a great investment.


Sure, giant corporations can flash their cash, offering sweet benefits and fat salaries. But here's a twist – studies spill the beans that happiness isn't just about the money. Big companies often struggle with cold work vibes, tense colleague relationships, and boring tasks. That's why they bring in happiness managers to fix things up.

Now, here's the kicker: this is something that smaller companies can take advantage of.

Even though smaller companies can feel cozier, it doesn't automatically mean it's all rainbows and unicorns for the employees. As these businesses grow, dealing with happiness becomes a big deal.

So, how can small and medium-sized companies ensure their crew stays happy and pumped up? Let's dive into that feel-good secret sauce!


1. Trust Your Team

Micromanagement might seem like the safe route for small business owners as they do not want to give up control over their vision. But the path to success does not lead through micromanagement.

Loosening the reins can lead to a more empowered and motivated workforce. Trust your employees to take ownership of their tasks and watch as they flourish. Remember, a little faith can go a long way in building a strong, cohesive team.


2. Foster Good Relationships

Creating a positive work environment isn't just about the work itself; it's also about the people.

So, encourage camaraderie among your team members. Don't worry, if it doesn't fit your budget, you don't have to organize teambuilding events like paintball or skiing. Simple get-togethers, like grabbing a beer after work or throwing a pizza friday every now and then can do the work too.

These informal moments can strengthen bonds and boost morale, making the office a more enjoyable place to be.


3. Embrace Job Diversity

Offering employees the opportunity to explore different roles within the company can breathe new life into their careers. Whether it's a lateral move to a different department or taking on new responsibilities, allowing for job flexibility shows that you value growth and development. Plus, it keeps things interesting for your team members, preventing burnout and increasing job satisfaction.

I can use myself as an example. Even though I was hired to write articles, I do it only on rare occasions nowadays because I got the opportunity to move on and create videos for eWay.


Another example

If you discover a hidden talent, you don't always have to change their job. One of our developers is also a pro at audio editing. So, we let him help out with podcast and video production.

It's a win-win! Jan gets to use his skills in a new way, and we get awesome podcasts. Got a Jan in your team? Give them the chance to shine!


4. Prioritize Work-Life Balance

Gone are the days of rigid 9-to-5 schedules. Embrace flexibility in the workplace by allowing employees to set their own hours or work remotely when needed (although you may believe that early birds are the most productive).

Recognize that life doesn't always fit neatly into a traditional workday and show empathy towards your team's personal commitments. A healthy work-life balance leads to happier, more engaged employees.


5. Small Gestures, Big Impact

Sometimes, it's the little things that make the biggest difference. Simple acts of appreciation, like remembering birthdays or investing in quality office amenities, can go a long way in showing your team that you care. Whether it's upgrading the coffee machine or celebrating milestones together, these gestures create a positive atmosphere and foster a sense of belonging.



Keeping employees happy in small and medium-sized businesses doesn't have to be complicated or costly. A huge leadership trend in recent years is empathy.

By trusting your team, nurturing relationships, embracing diversity, prioritizing work-life balance, and showing appreciation through small gestures, you can create a thriving workplace where everyone feels valued and motivated. After all, a happy team is a productive team!