Happiness Training at Chess

How are you feeling today? Happy, hopes the United Nations, whose 2012 resolution proclaiming March 20th as “International Day of Happiness” recognises the role that happiness and well-being play in achieving global goals and aspirations.

The Dalai Lama is a key supporter, and it’s his philosophy which has inspired award winning business leader David Pollock to personally develop and lead “Happiness Training” at his 550-strong technology solutions organisation.

The approach has helped earn the company an enviable reputation, with 2019 seeing Chess celebrate 10 consecutive years in The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list.

Happiness Training is an integral part of Chess culture, and as applicable - and relevant- to Pollock’s work at the Prince’s Trust as it is to the people he leads at Chess.

“Just thinking of three things, every day, which have made you happy, creates a positive outlook – and can make you a better person, a better partner, a better friend” explains Pollock.

“Attitude is key”, he continues. “How you’re visualising an outcome really matters – and that can make good things happen – or be a significant barrier.”

Responsibility for personal happiness cannot be delegated – instead the business is committed to equipping their people with the tools needed to increase their energy and confidence, with as much emphasis placed on mental well-being as physical health.  Living in the moment, embracing change and challenge and being open to new ideas are all themes explored in the sessions.

With access to activities such as weekly yoga and meditation and support for weary mums and dads from “Parent Champions”, it’s clear that for at least one company, focus on happiness is not just a once-in-a-year event.

And that’s definitely something worth smiling about.