Human resources people worry a lot about worker productivity and ‘engagement’, aka happiness. But are the world’s happy workers the most productive? Do they work a lot or a little? The circles, representing countries, are larger where workers are happier. The horizontal axis shows productivity (GDP per hour worked); the vertical, hours worked per year. The US is happiest, with 30 percent of its workforce engaged, while its GDP per hour is a high $63. Outside the US two of the happiest nations—Colombia and Brazil—are not all that productive. The French and the Dutch put in short workdays and boast high GDP per hour, yet fewer than 10 percent of them are happy. It’s good to be an American.
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(This story appears in the 29 November, 2013 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)
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