The Happy at Work Podcast

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Podcast by The Happy at Work Podcast

The Happy at Work Podcast

We speak with organizational leaders including founders, CEOs, human resources professionals, and positive psychology researchers, on how to create a more positive workplace.

Latest episodes

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13 September 2023

Fostering Resilient Teams in Changing Workscapes: Patty Marchlowska, Sr. Director at Eli Lilly

In this episode, Laura and Tessa discuss the dynamic world of multigenerational teams with Patty Marshloska, Senior Director of Strategy for US Customer Engagement at Eli Lilly. We know you'll be struck by Patty's profound self-awareness and transparency about her working style, and how she's navigated signifigant career transitions with open-mindedness and humility.

We've pulled out the top three takeaways from this conversation:

1. Embracing Diversity: Patty shares her journey of learning to appreciate the power of diversity, whether it's generational, cultural, or gender-related. Learn why diverse perspectives on a team lead to better outcomes and how fostering trust and respect among team members is essential.

2. Radically Transparent Communication: Learn about the value of radically transparent communication in the workplace. Patty's candid approach to sharing her experiences, failures, and lessons learned demonstrates how open dialogue can create a culture of learning and growth.

3. Adapting to Change: As the healthcare industry continuously evolves, Patty discusses the importance of adaptability and resilience in the face of change. Find out how embracing a culture of continuous learning can help teams not only survive but thrive in an ever-changing work landscape.

Patty Marshloska, RN is a seasoned healthcare professional with over 30 years of experience. Her journey from a young nurse to a respected leader has taught her the value of diversity, radical transparency in communication, and the crucial role of adaptability in a changing industry. Patty's passion lies in fostering resilient multigenerational teams that drive success through collaboration and learning.

Join us for this insightful conversation on building resilient, multigenerational teams that drive success in an evolving world of work.



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06 September 2023

Elevating Work-Life Harmony: Alexis Fink, VP of People Analytics at Meta

In this episode, Laura engages in a thought-provoking conversation with Alexis Fink, VP of People Analytics at Meta (formerly Facebook). Alexis shares her career journey from her early beginnings in industrial-organizational psychology to her current role leading the people analytics function at Meta. This episode delves into various aspects of employee well-being, engagement, and work-life integration, discussing the role of data-driven approaches in understanding these concepts and enhancing organizational effectiveness.

We've pulled out the top three take-aways from this episode for you:

Balancing Work and Personal Life: Alexis discusses her personal experiences of maintaining work-life balance and work-life integration at different stages of her career. She highlights the importance of setting clear boundaries and expectations, as well as recognizing the significance of flexibility to accommodate personal needs while remaining productive and engaged at work.

Meaningful Work and Purpose: The conversation focuses on the intersection of meaningful work and employee engagement. Alexis shares examples of how job design and reimagining roles can lead to increased job satisfaction, engagement, and a sense of purpose. She emphasizes the role of qualitative research and understanding cultural contexts in creating environments where employees can thrive.

The Future of People Analytics: Looking ahead, Alexis envisions the evolution of people analytics as a fusion of both quantitative and qualitative approaches. She highlights the potential of AI-driven tools to optimize individual productivity and work patterns while underscoring the need for organizations to integrate psychology-driven insights to address unique employee needs, ensure well-being, and enhance engagement.

About Alexis Fink:
Alexis Fink is the Vice President of People Analytics at Meta, formerly known as Facebook. With a background in industrial-organizational psychology, Alexis has a wealth of experience in understanding and enhancing employee well-being, engagement, and work-life integration. She has held leadership roles in organizations such as General Motors, Microsoft, Intel, and Meta, where she has championed the use of data-driven insights to shape positive employee experiences and organizational success.



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30 August 2023

Transforming Productivity and Engagement With AI: Danielle Grossi and Tyrelle Barnes, Microsoft

In this episode, Michael chats with Tyrelle Barnes and Danielle Grossi from Microsoft on the transformative role of artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace. They dive into how AI is being integrated into various Microsoft products, such as Microsoft Copilot, to enhance productivity, creativity, and employee engagement. The conversation covers recent trends in AI, the impact on job roles, and the power of AI in areas like onboarding and retention.


We've pulled out the top three take-aways from this episode for you:

Microsoft Copilot Enhances Productivity- The hosts highlight how Microsoft Copilot, powered by AI, has become a productivity game-changer. It assists users in tasks like creating custom learning paths, drafting emails, generating content, and even facilitating the creative process. Copilot's ability to quickly generate valuable insights and content saves time, allowing employees to focus on more strategic and creative aspects of their work.

Impact on Employee Engagement and Performance- The hosts explore the link between AI adoption, employee engagement, and performance. Tyrelle discusses a study that found a significant correlation between high employee engagement scores and organizational performance. AI tools like Viva Glint help measure engagement, gather sentiment analysis, and offer actionable insights that enable organizations to improve their workplace culture and employee satisfaction.

Addressing Resistance to AI Adoption- The conversation addresses the challenges of AI adoption, including resistance due to fear of job displacement or loss of control. The hosts emphasize the importance of open dialogue, setting up policies and governance around AI usage, and highlighting the benefits that AI brings to the workplace. It's essential for organizations to address concerns and implement responsible AI practices to create a smooth transition.


About Tyrelle Barnes:
Tyrelle is an Employee Experience Global Black Belt at Microsoft. She specializes in bridging the gap between product engineering teams and customer-facing teams, ensuring that customer feedback is incorporated into product development. Tyrelle is also the co-host of the "Midday Cafe" podcast at Microsoft, where she discusses generative AI solutions and Microsoft Copilot.

About Danielle Grossi:
Danielle is a Principal Program Manager in the Office Engineering organization at Microsoft. She has experience working on various products, including Viva Insights. Danielle's current focus is on building sovereign clouds for governments, providing them with control and autonomy over their cloud infrastructure. She highlights the role of AI in enhancing efficiency and creativity in workplace tasks.



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23 August 2023

Thriving in Flexible Work: Paul Slater, Founder of Billion Minds

In this episode, Laura and Michael chat with Paul Slater, co-founder of Billion Minds. This episode delves deep into the evolving landscape of work, exploring the intersection of adaptability, resilience, trust, and purpose in flexible work environments.

We've pulled out the top three take-aways from this episode for you:

Adaptability and Resilience-
Paul unravels the profound significance of adaptability and resilience in the contemporary workplace. As the co-founder of Billion Minds, he offers a unique perspective on adaptability—an ability to fluidly transition between diverse work modes, skill sets, and contexts. Resilience, meanwhile, emerges as the bedrock for navigating the unpredictable roller coaster of modern work life. Through personal anecdotes, Paul illustrates the pivotal role adaptability and resilience played in his own career trajectory.

Trust and Purpose in Flexible Work Culture-
Trust and purpose emerge as the cornerstones of a thriving flexible work culture. Paul delves into the intricate dance between trust and remote work, highlighting the cognitive biases that shape managers' perceptions of remote employees. He emphasizes that building trust involves not just believing in the work being done, but also fostering an environment of mutual respect and empowerment. The conversation deepens as Paul explores the profound impact of shared purpose—a compelling understanding of how individual contributions align with the broader organizational mission. The intertwining of trust and purpose creates a powerful synergy that fuels employee engagement and effective decision-making in times of change.

Daily Skill Development for Effective Management-
Paul offers a paradigm-shifting approach to effective management in the modern era—daily skill development. Drawing parallels to physical fitness, he likens honing managerial skills to building a muscle that demands consistent exercise. As we dissect Paul's insights, it becomes evident that the traditional approach of periodic training sessions falls short in the rapidly evolving work landscape. By advocating for a daily practice of skill refinement, Paul empowers managers to not only adapt to the changing dynamics but also thrive within them. Through a compelling analogy, he underscores the value of a ten-minute daily commitment to skill improvement, a strategy that empowers managers to lead in flexible work environments and foster a culture of adaptability and resilience.

In this enlightening episode, Paul Slater's wisdom and expertise provide guidance for individuals and organizations seeking to thrive in the dynamic world of modern work. Tune in to uncover the secrets of adapting, leading, and flourishing in flexible work environments.

About Paul Slater

Paul Slater is the co-founder of Billion Minds, a company that focuses on helping organizations identify and grow adaptable, resilient employees. With a background in computer science and extensive experience, including ten years at Microsoft, Paul has a deep understanding of the evolving intersection between technology, business, and human behavior. His expertise lies in guiding organizations through the challenges and opportunities presented by flexible work environments. Paul emphasizes the importance of building trust, fostering shared purpose, and continuously honing management skills to thrive in the dynamic landscape of modern work.



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17 August 2023

Navigating Work Culture and Leadership in the Middle East: Zahi Abdeen, Leadership Consultant

In this episode, Laura and Tessa spoke with Zahi Abdeen, Managing Director of 360 Degrees Consulting, to discuss work culture, leadership development, and the unique dynamics of the Middle Eastern job market. Zahi's diverse background in sales, marketing, and talent development, along with his extensive international experience, provided valuable insights into creating fulfilling workplaces.

Emphasis on Purpose and Values: Zahi highlighted the growing importance of purpose-driven work for Generation Z, regardless of geographical location. He observed that younger generations are more likely to seek meaningful, impactful roles that align with their values. This trend, accelerated by the pandemic, underscores the need for leaders to create environments where employees' values are acknowledged and integrated into the workplace.

Balancing Cultural Differences: Zahi discussed how Generation Z in the Middle East faces unique challenges related to cultural polarities, such as preserving traditions versus embracing globalization, or stability versus risk-taking. Expatriates in the region, particularly in economically prosperous countries like Saudi Arabia and the Gulf region, experience a diverse and multicultural work environment that contributes to blurring cultural differences. Open-mindedness and cultural understanding are crucial for both expats and local employees to thrive in this environment.

Human-Centric Leadership: Zahi emphasized the importance of leaders fostering a human-centric approach, especially in the face of challenges like burnout and work-life integration. The Middle East, characterized by a strong collective culture, provides an environment where leaders can prioritize employee well-being. Effective leadership involves genuine, heart-to-heart conversations, active listening, and supporting employees' mental and physical health. Encouraging leaders to adopt a pull strategy—asking employees about their needs—rather than a push strategy, fosters a healthy and psychologically safe work culture.

With an MBA from the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Zahi's professional journey has taken him from a telecom career to a passion for talent development. As an Arab American, Palestinian American, he offers a unique perspective on cultural nuances in various work environments. Zahi is a sought-after speaker and consultant, guiding leaders to build positive, purpose-driven workplaces.



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26 July 2023

Creating Lasting Happiness at Work: Jessica Weiss, Organizational Design Expert

In this episode, Jessica Weiss discusses her journey to studying happiness at work, delving into her background in organizational design and transformation. She explains the importance of fairness and transparency in job roles and the significance of feeling indispensable in providing value to others. Jessica highlights the relevance of psychological safety and trust in creating a happy work environment. She shares tools and habits to foster lasting happiness and encourages speaking to inner voices in the third person as a way to overcome Impostor Syndrome. Finally, Jessica emphasizes the power of creating a sense of progress in daily work to enhance satisfaction and happiness.

Jessica Weiss is a speaker and consultant who teaches businesses how to find more happiness, fulfillment, and satisfaction at work. With 15 years of experience working with global brands like Coca-Cola, Johnson & Johnson, and American Express, Jessica is a trusted source for those who are searching for tangible, research-based strategies to create happier workers.

Resources discussed in the podcast: