Making Work Happy

Last Updated Jun 4, 2008 11:47 PM EDT

Should work make us happy?

Hmm. I should say yes -- I write frequently about ideas suggesting workplace culture should be more encouraging and supportive than it often is. Most people spend the majority of their waking hours working, and work shouldn't be a depressing place to be.

But I'm not sure work is a place where we should expect to be happy. Managers in particular probably cannot make people happy at work all of the time.

Not that they should make people miserable, either. So let's say you want to know if you make your co-workers happy. Here's a test developed by the Chief Happiness Officer, Alexander Kjerulf. You have to be a Facebook user to take the test. Commenters on his post suggest that using Facebook is a flawed delivery strategy, because people won't have the co-workers they hate on their friends list. It may be all the more revealing for that lack. It only lets you choose 12 people, so you may not get a good pool, either.

  • Michael Fitzgerald

    Michael Fitzgerald writes about innovation and other big ideas in business for publications like the New York Times, The Economist, Fast Company, Inc. and CIO. He’s worked as a writer or editor at Red Herring, ZDNet, TechTV and Computerworld, and has received numerous awards as a writer and editor. Most recently, his piece on the hacker collective the l0pht won the 2008 award for best trade piece from the American Society of Journalists and Authors. He was also a 2007 Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellow in Science and Religion.