You, Happy

“Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof.” Excellent business advice from Pharrell. It coincides well with Shawn Achor’s Ted Talk, The Happy Secret To Better Work. Mr. Achor contends that we need to change how we think about success. The current construct is, “We’ve pushed happiness over the cognitive horizon as a society.” I will be successful when x (insert achievement) happens. Problem is, we keep pushing the goal post further away.

Turns out to be a timing issue. Mr. Achor, CEO of Good Think Inc., suggests increasing the level of positivity in the present that feeds the brain with happiness generating a competitive advantage, personally and professionally. He believes that creativity, energy and intelligence increases with a positive attitude. From a business perspective, his study concludes a positive brain is 31% more productive.

A stressed or negative mind can be holding back your commercial appraisal firm. A cynical attitude of where our industry is headed, lack of confidence to invest in software to automate your appraisal product and a general malaise of positive leadership can have a significant effect on your office culture. It’s costing you real money. And besides, it’s not very fun to be a negative Nancy or negative Nate. There’s no money in it. Just a bucket of mental poo.

He provides tools to get there, specifically a 21-day challenge. These include a daily gratitude list, journaling positive things, exercise and random acts of kindness. The concept of training the body and the mind together has been proven with Eastern thought and Western medicine. The duration of these positive behaviors are thought to take hold after three weeks, training your brain to look for the positive more often than the negative.

Health (and by extension happiness) isn’t the absence of disease. 71 years ago, the World Health Organization summarized the concept nicely: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

Invest in your attitude towards your business. A positive outlook will change the way you view your appraisal profession and the creation of the product. Being happy will be a competitive edge. Be the sunshine within your organization. Playing this Ted Talk video to your office people is a good first step. “Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof (Because I’m happy), My level’s too high to bring me down, Can’t nothing bring me down.”