The joy of work – the workplace should be a place of happiness

The workplace plays a key role in creating this happiness. If the workplaces we design and build help create joy for workers, then we’ve done our job.

Well-designed, well-built workplaces mean happy workers – which is good for staff retention and recruitment, says Paul Patenall

This year’s BCO Conference is based on a word I can’t pronounce: “arbejdsglaede” (ah-bites-gleh-the). It hardly rolls off the tongue. I’ve heard the word butchered in all manner of bizarre, cadence-twisting ways since we at the British Council for Offices settled on it as the theme for  this summer’s BCO Conference in Copenhagen. Why, then, have I decided to base this year’s event around something so unpronounceable to so many?

Well, let’s start with what it means. Arbejdsglaede is the Danish concept of finding joy at work. It is a belief that the workplace should be a place of happiness, that work should spark inspiration. As a concept, it is something that I’m sure most of us agree with or aspire to – even if, some days, a brutal commute or tight deadline can make it feel like a pipe dream.

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