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Happiness in the Workplace

Mike Mangino

December 1, 2021

Early in my career, I would bounce from job to job. I would start a job excited and ready to improve the world. Then, I would gradually become less enthusiastic about my work. Eventually, I would start looking for greener grass elsewhere. I believed that if I could just find the right job, I would be excited to go to work every day.

Over time, I noticed something. Certain people always seemed excited about their work. Interacting with these people left me feeling energized. At first, I thought these were just lucky people who always worked on fun projects. That theory didn’t last long because I noticed these folks were just as excited when working on less glamorous projects as they were on the fun ones.

The more I looked, the more I observed these kinds of people in all parts of my life. I noticed a worker at a restaurant I frequented who was always enthusiastic. There was nothing special about her job. It was the same work that everybody at the restaurant did. But for some reason, she seemed to have more fun.

Around this time, I learned about the work of Amy Wrzesniewski, a Yale professor who researched the psychology of happiness at work. I was struck by the fact that, according to her study, enjoyment wasn’t something tied to a job itself as much as it linked to the attitude team members brought to their jobs. To me, this was earth-shattering. Before I thought that to be happier, I needed to find a better job. After reading about the study, I realized I could find more enjoyment without switching employers.

This theory seemed too good to be true. However, after working at it for the last ten years, I am fully convinced of the concept. That doesn’t mean I’m excited about every part of my job. I still dread expense reports, for instance. However, the conscious adjustment to my attitude helps me find the small reasons to be excited about even the most menial tasks. Over time, I became the enthusiastic person that I am today.

At TriumphPay, I’m lucky to work with people who approach their work in the same way. Recently, my co-worker, Melissa Foreman, SVP, Chief Strategy Officer, was commended for her “enthusiasm, commitment, and impeccable creativity.” When you work with people like that, it’s hard not to be excited to do great work.

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About the Author

Mike Mangino

Mike Mangino is the Chief Technology Officer for TriumphPay where he leads the development and dissemination of advanced technologies that improve and increase business for our customers and TriumphPay. Prior to joining TriumphPay, Mike was the Chief Technology Officer for HubTran where he was responsible for designing and building software to automate back-office payables for the transportation industry and built and managed a team of engineers including software development, DevOps and customer support.

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