Treating your employees right is definitely a topic we don’t shy away from. Because your employees are the backbone of your company, it shouldn’t be a surprise that treating them well will keep productivity high and creativity flowing.
But we aren’t the only ones who think this way. Recently, the Harvard Business Review published an article titled, “Employees Who Feel Love Perform Better.” In that article, contributors Sigal Barsade and Olivia (Mandy) O’Neill discussed their study, “What’s Love Got to Do With It?: The Influence of a Culture of Companionate Love in the Long-term Care Setting,” which they put together for the forthcoming Administrative Quarterly.
In that study, Barsade and O’Neill surveyed 185 employees, 108 patients, and 42 patient family members on two separate occasions, 16 months apart from one another. According to the researchers, the purpose of the study was to explore the influence that emotional culture has on employee, patient, and family outcomes.
Here’s what they found:
- Employees who felt they worked in a loving, caring culture reported higher levels of satisfaction and teamwork.
- Those same employees showed up to work more often.
- Research also demonstrated that this type of culture related directly to client outcomes, including improved patient mood, quality of life, satisfaction, and fewer trips to the ER.
Barsade and O’Neill also conducted a follow-up study in order to see whether their findings held true across industries. In their follow-up, they surveyed 3,201 employees in seven different industries from financial services to real estate and found the results to be the same. (For more, you can read rest of the report, here.)
Caring is a pretty significant part of employee satisfaction.
What this study shows is that people who work in a environment where they are allowed to express compassion and care for their fellow co-workers are more satisfied with their jobs, and feel more committed to the organization, compared to those who work in an organization that abides by a “dog eat dog” mentality.
As a leader or manager, it’s important to set an example for your team. Don’t be afraid to show your team that you genuinely care for them and that you are there to support them. Having that kind of support will give them the drive to work hard and make them feel like it’s okay to help others to do the same, making this a win-win situation in the end.