Workers are happy as Christmas nears: Report

But as festivities near, stress among workers could rise, warns expert

Workers are happy as Christmas nears: Report

Canadian workers, overall, are happy as Christmas is just a few weeks away, according to a recent report.

Overall, Canada has a 6.8 out of 10 National Work Happiness Score, reports ADP Canada.

That number is up by 0.1 from October 2023.

Close to half (46 per cent) of working Canadians reported feeling very happy with their current role and responsibilities, according to a previous ADP Canada report released in March.

For November, the primary indicator of worker happiness increased to 7.0/10, +0.1 points from October, as 47 per cent of workers in Canada still say they feel satisfied with their current role and responsibilities.

The top secondary indicator continues to be work-life balance and flexibility at 7.0/10, also up 0.1 points from October. The only other time this indicator recorded this high score was in August of this year, according to the report.

Canadians also have high scores when it comes to the other secondary indicators: recognition and support: 6.7/10; compensation and benefits: 6.3/10 (NC); options for career advancement: 6.1/10 (NC). Those scores show no change from October.

Age groups, regional differences

Among age groups, Boomers (over 59 years old) have the highest happiness score this month at 7.2/10, according to ADP Canada’s survey of over 1,200 randomly selected employed Canadian adults, conducted in the first week of November.

This is the case even though their score is down 0.1 from October.

Gen Z (18- to 26-year-olds) follows with a score of 6.9 out on 10 (up 0.1 from October), ahead of Millennials (27- to 42-year-olds) with a score of 6.8 out of 10 (no change from October) and Gen-X (43- to 58-year-olds) with a score of 6.6 out of 10, (up 0.1 from October).

Here are the happiness scores among Canadian regions:

  • Québec: 7.0/10 (+0.1 from October)
  • British Columbia: 6.9/10 (-0.3)
  • Atlantic Canada: 6.9/10 (+0.1)
  • Sask/Manitoba: 6.8/10 (+0.3)
  • Ontario: 6.7/10 (+0.2)
  • Alberta: 6.6/10 (-0.3)

Happy employees are more productive, innovative and receptive, according to a previous report.

Keeping workers’ morale high

These high scores, however, do not mean that employers’ job is done, says Shawna Gee, director of marketing, ADP Canada.

"As we have noted throughout the year, seasonal changes can hinder or heighten happiness levels. The slight bump in the National Happiness Score may indicate upcoming vacation days and time spent with loved ones may be helping to offset the gloomy feeling of late fall days.

“While the holiday season may be joyful for many, it can also bring on heightened levels of stress as looming year-end deadlines get closer. A few potential identifiers employers may want to be wary of as the holidays near can include, but not limited to lack of focus, change in behaviour or quality of performance, or even absenteeism."

She also shares a few tips for employers who wish to boost workers’ morale.

"While there is an increase in worker happiness this month, it's important for employers to help boost morale and reduce stress amongst the workplace as we head into the holiday season. A few ways this can be done is by celebrating successes, setting goals to keep teams on track, as well as encouraging time off or even implementing wellness breaks during the workday.”

Christopher Pappas, founder of eLearning Industry, also shares the following ways to improve employee morale leading up to the Christmas break:

  1. Bring the festivities to work.
  2. Provide positive feedback.
  3. Give employees festive gifts.
  4. Go big with bonuses, extra PTO and flexibility.
  5. Keep the balance between employees.
  6. Leave plans for new projects for after the holiday break, when your staff will be rested and refreshed.
  7. Give your team something to wait for.

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