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Organisations are adopting various strategies and programs to keep their employees happy and healthy. Article by Sanjima Adhikari for Business World.

Gone are the days when the most paid jobs were the best places to work. A strong supportive culture, professional growth, flexible working hours, rewards and recognitions are the things that people look for while joining an organisation. Organisations are adopting various strategies and programs to keep their employees happy and healthy. As it is rightly said that healthy employees lead to more productivity and growth.

Employee appreciation, flexibility in working hours and styles and employee engagement programmes are another aspect of workplace satisfaction and engagement. Organisations have changed their strategies and style of working to achieve long-term sustainability goal.

"A cool organisation must have the pre-requisites of fostering personnel relations and supporting growth. For us, at K Raheja Corp the endeavor is to create a culture where employees feel valued, engaged and empowered.Initiatives range town-halls, where an employee can address their query or concern to the CEO in an open forum. Similarly, employees are engaged through interesting workshops like Tibetan yoga sessions, Zumba classes, a cyclist club, access to holiday homes at Matheran and Lonavala, all of which go a long way in making them feel connected. We also have a wide range of sports and cultural activities like cricket matches, Garba celebrations, in-house photography contests, seasonal parties like 'gola party' in summer and 'vadapao party' in the monsoon! Additionally, rewards and incentives motivate employees to put that extra effort to achieve their career goals. Finally, a fresh and creative workplace with futuristic facilities gives it the final touches to make the workplace truly cool!" said Urvi Aradhya, Chief Human Resources Officer, K Raheja Corp.

"The dynamics of today's workplace is a rapidly changing one, especially with the spurt of startups. A fun yet effective workplace should primarily be safe. One in which both management and employees are encouraged to engage in open dialogue and both are heard. Employees are allowed to gauge their own effectiveness and their contribution to work and are free to choose how they utilize their time without management breathing down their neck. Weekly lunches and ideas bounced off each other over beer is a great way to bond and foster engagement. At Sunday Mattresses we make it a point to go out on a team outing to an outstation locale at least once a year. Every week we have a team lunch and although ad hoc, our team meets up at least twice in a month for a drink or two, just to kick back and relax. This season we are all going to an IPL match. Nothing bonds Indians like cricket." said Alphonse Reddy, Founder, and CEO, Sunday Mattresses.

"Startups require an energetic and zealous environment as most employees are expected to put in longer hours at work. If your employees love your organization, they themselves will deliver their best. Each progressive organization needs an awesome company culture, which includes creating winning conditions that support improvement and ideation, along with personal satisfaction. Engineer.ai strives to offer just that. With flexible work timings, recreational spaces, and a collaborative atmosphere, our offices empower and encourage increased productivity and output." Added by Sachin Dev Duggal, Founder & Chief Wizard, Engineer.ai.

Shawn Anchor, the author of The Happiness Advantage, has found that the brain works much better when a person is feeling positive. At those times, individuals tend to be more creative and better at solving problems. And additional research has shown that when workers are happy they're more effective collaborators working toward common goals. As Anchor sees it, the incentive for organizations is clear-cut-"happiness leads to greater levels of profits" for companies that take the right steps.

Babu Vittal, Head HR, ShopClues spoke that "When an employee feels that whatever they do has an overall impact on the business, and is able to see the progress on overall impact, the workplace becomes cool. It is more intrinsic. There are a few extrinsic factors including relaxed work atmosphere, conducive climate, employee friendly policies and high pedigree colleagues. All of these get converted into intrinsic factors over a period of time. In a nutshell, when I know what I am doing and whatever I am doing impacts the bottom line of the organization, it makes me feel connected and adds a "cool factor" to my workplace. "

Tanvi Malik, Co-founder, FabAlley added ,"There are multiple factors that make a workplace fun, while remaining productive. To begin with, it's important to have cross-team interactions. Things like internal networking groups, on-site fitness centers, annual off-sites, celebrating festivals and occasions together really make the office an exciting space. At FabAlley, we do not believe in traditional office hierarchies. The team structure is flat and we all refer to each other by our first names, which creates a comfortable and informal zone that keeps our colleagues motivated, without creating rigid functional boundaries."

"Modern-day offices should provide a fun and engaging workplace to make the employees productive and happy. An employee should enjoy his work and not treat it as just a job. Workplaces should have recreational spaces to help the employees unwind and get back to work with a fresh perspective. We at Yerha value our employees as much as we value our customers. We provide them with all such amenities and frequently organize team outings to help the employees become more approachable and bond with each other", said Manikant Jain, Founder Yerha.com.

"Employee engagement, empowerment, rewards, recognitions and appreciation are the key factors that make an organization one of the coolest places to work. In order to engage with our employees, we at Fujitsu have undertaken various initiatives and ensured that we always keep a check of these elements. Our aim is to make our office an exciting place where work and fun goes hand in hand. Every month, five to six events are organized for our employees as per the engagement calendar which includes quizzes, events to support sports and motivate employees' wellness. The most exciting months for our employees are from October to December as we conduct sports tournaments like Fujitsu Premier league, basketball tournament etc. We have been receiving an overwhelming response from our employees for all these events, their participation and support motivates us to arrange such activities. We have been constantly working towards developing a workplace of trust and engagement and are quickly gaining recognition as one of the best ICT companies to work with."- Attributed to Sumit Sabharwal, Head of Human Resources, Fujitsu Consulting India.

Jagrati Shringi CMO & Co-Founder, VOYLLA said,"if people are having fun, they're going to work harder, stay on longer, maintain their composure in a crisis, and take better care of the organization, says The Levity Effect. Best way to achieve this is to create a strong bond with the team, with continuous communication, constant appreciation, and encouraging plenty pf laughter. When the team sticks together like a family, they have fun even while working hard and also sail through rough waters smoothly."

Pooja Duggal, Founder Healthhunt said, "Businesses today realize that they have to look after their employees, and Healthhunt is not only taking care of its own employees but also helping other organizations accomplish the challenge through our tool - healthwire. We go an extra mile to ensure that our own employees are healthy - physically, mentally, and emotionally. We offer fairly flexible work schedules and give employees liberty in decision-making. Overall, we try and maintain a healthy physical environment with healthy food offerings (we call it 'Fruity Wednesdays'). We also have a dance, Zumba, and Yoga sessions every now and then."

Surely it can be seen that companies are adopting innovative strategies to engage employees and make it a better place to work with.