Gross National Happiness

Happiness… the ultimate wealth?

After a natural disaster, reconstruction is reflected by an upturn in activity. Cyclones and other natural disasters positively nurture a country’s GDP. However, in the measurement of wealth creation, unpaid volunteer or associative work is not taken into account.

In the 21st century, why do we still measure a State’s wealth with indicators from 1934?

Bhutan asked this question a long time ago and found the answer by substituting the GDP with the Gross National Happiness index and added the GNH to its constitution in 2008.8.

A radical change in our representation of the world

For my part, I very quickly embraced this Gross National Happiness reference frame, which aims to radically change our representation of the world and which I think is perfectly fitting for the new challenges of our era and our organizations.

Thus, on the one hand, the GNH links the societal transformation with the personal transformation of every individual and, on the other hand, it introduces the idea that you work for your own happiness as well the happiness of others and of the planet.

For me, these two principles edify a movement which is part of the corporate societal responsibility spirit as the CSR areas are all included in the four pillars of the GNH: “good” governance, sustainable and equitable economic development, respect for the environment and promotion of the values and culture of the organization/company in question – , but which goes well beyond that.

Today, in connection with the GNH center France and Bhutanese GNH where I was trained in order to be as close to the source as possible, I provide support to organizations wishing to contribute to this societal transformation and companies where staff members (re)discover every morning the reason why they come to their office or their workshop.

New performance and employee motivation

Beyond the construction of a regenerated vision, the approach that I propose allows you to rationally and concretely scan nine fields in the company (well-being, quality of life, good governance, health, training, the community vitality, cultural diversity and resilience, time management, protection of the environment and resilience).

The overall objective consists in creating a virtuous circle, which will allow you to combine a new performance with well-being within the company as well as employee motivation through the desire to build something “greater” together.

This action is easily carried out by sequencing the defined steps according to the company’s priorities. The indicators, which are developed by the management and the staff, allow for the validation of the successive steps.

You should bear in mind that I do not use a standardized approach. I offer a customized solution and start from the structure’s current state and from everyone’s level of willingness to develop on this path.
For some companies that are advanced in the CSR, the process will be easier to implement since a lot of bricks will already have been laid. For others, additional steps will be necessary.

Bringing the group to deliver all its power

This system also raises the question of personal development within the company. I used to be reluctant to get organizations involved in that area, but I noticed that the company’s and every individual’s development goes hand in hand, just like in the first GNH principle.

Today, I offer several gateways to access this virtuous dynamic: work on strengths and staff member alignment (cf. Ikigai and leadership) , the problem of happiness at work (cf. happy at work and economic performance and well-being) and benevolent management (cf. mindful management). I also use non-violent communication which is a tool that allows you to open the subject in a useful and “peaceful” manner, and then go deeper afterwards.

To conclude, I would say that three major forces are at work in this overall system of Gross National Happiness: intention, individual transformation and collective intelligence.

My job as a coach is to succeed with you, an almost alchemical composition. ■

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