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How To Cultivate a Happier Workplace

(October 11, 2012) New Empathia White Paper: How To Cultivate a Happier Workplace

Even if employees deem an organization a “great place to work,” it likely has more to do with certain cultural components and less to do with the physical working conditions or the benefits package you offer, according to a new white paper published by Empathia. The paper, “Is Your Workplace Really a Great Place to Work?,” offers recommendations on how employers can optimize their workplace culture and position it for greater success.

“Workplace culture can be changed and optimized—and with a surprisingly modest investment of time and resources,” says Philip Chard, president and chief executive officer of Empathia. “We know how to do it, so what is often lacking is the will to make it happen.”

Many U.S.-based organizations reward “workaholics,” employees who work excessive hours, forego vacations and blur the lines between work and their personal lives. While these habits may provide short-term gains, the resulting stress and related costly physical and mental health problems eventually erode performance and bottom lines.

“Organizations know this is a problem but nobody wants to look at the elephant in the room,” says Carol Wilson, senior vice president and chief operating officer of Empathia. She believes this is partially due to the fact that company leaders are not sure how to address these issues and make the changes that would improve the workplace culture.

Empathia’s new white paper suggests that the strategies and work habits that once catapulted U.S. companies to success will likely not take us any further in an increasingly global marketplace. Nor will they increase our ability to compete successfully against other industrialized nations. As an alternative to these strategies—and to create a truly great place to work—the paper recommends that employers:
  • Measure and determine the present state of your workplace.
  • Identify gaps or issues that hinder a successful workplace culture.
  • Formulate attainable goals and initiatives that will positively impact the culture.
  • Measure and monitor your organization’s progress to ensure continual progress.
  • Address any additional areas that need attention by making regular adjustments to your overall strategy.
“When organizations realize that cultural issues are undermining their success, they often turn to employee training, hoping to change individual and collective behavior,” notes Chard. “However, these programs rarely influence overall workplace culture and how people treat each other. In general, information does not change behavior.”

The paper also points out that efforts to improve workplace culture shouldn’t be restricted to struggling organizations. Culture change can be beneficial even to companies that are thriving by helping them achieve even greater levels of success.

“Is Your Workplace Really a Great Place to Work?” can be downloaded at

About Empathia
Empathia provides individual and organizational services that maximize well-being, safety, and productivity in the workplace. In addition to being widely recognized as a thought leader within their industry, they have customized highly successful behavioral health and emergency management programs for some of the most recognizable companies in the world. Empathia’s wide range of modular services include workplace culture improvement, behavior change and EAP programs, leader development and emergency response and plan development. For more information, visit

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