Tuesday, October 3, 2017 / by Ryan Fellows
So, apparently sometimes I get deep in thought and wonder the meaning of life. :) My latest thought has to do with happiness. I feel as though this word means different things to different people. It makes me wonder why one single word can have so many different meanings and mean something different to each person I talk to.
The idea stemmed from our team practices. Our way of interviewing a potential team member does not fall into the category of the atypical type interviews where an uninterested second-tiered manager gets assigned the job of interviewing several candidates. All while using a cloned copy of standard interview questions. You know the ones. Tell me about a time when…. What are your strengths?.... What are your weaknesses?....What makes you the best person for this position? These questions are great for a $9.00/hr job at the local fast food joint where the turnover rate is astronomical and they, in all actuality, like it that way. However, for long-lasting team members/employees, why not put in the work to really get to know someone. What makes them tick? Why do they do what they do? The standard interview questions will suffice, however, when you decide on your next hire, how do you really know the administrative assistant that is talking to all of your clients? What truly makes her get out of bed in the morning? What are their goals? Aren’t these the questions we ask the people we are interested in getting to know? When we decide to get to know someone that we would like to spend time with, either professionally or personally, we ask the deeper questions. Take your significant other for instance, how many questions did you ask them at the start of your relationship to find out about their life and their point of views? Wouldn't it make sense to do the same with the people that you will spend more time with each week, in some cases, than your family?
We have taken this principle to our interview process. We want to make sure and truly get to know the people we are spending a minimum of 8 hours a day with. We have a lengthy process of questions and probing that help us really find out what makes them tick and what drives them.
This practice sparked my interest regarding happiness. I am sure there is a generic answer to what happiness is. We break down each of their answers to find out what makes them do what they do. Well...that translates to what actually makes them happy, right? Well, just like with different personalities, everyone’s root of all happiness sometimes is reflective of their past and some of their future. The hope for happiness. Each question we ask mainly has to do with their future. What they want to do and how to get them there. When we drill down each reason for their actions and why they take the actions that they do, it all boils down to being happy.
This made me go hmmmm again. Not one person has mentioned that they are fully satisfied with where they are. I bet if you were out in public and talked to 10 people, 100 people, you would find very few people that say they are truly. Why is that? Is it a lack of contentment? Are we always striving for the next best thing? Have we settled and still have that aspiration to do more? How long will be stay this way? Will we ever be satisfied? Do we move throughout our day to day life conforming to what someone else's idea of happy? Do you spend your days doing things that make other people happy, but not yourself?
It’s a tough question. What makes you truly happy? Of course, the common answers are family, kids, etc. But really…..what makes you roll out of bed in the morning and do what you do? Is it what makes you happy? If not, WHY ARE YOU DOING IT? We are only here for so long….. Why not be happy while you are here?
So for my latest social experiment, ask your friends, your co-workers, and even your significant others what makes them happy. Truly happy…