The Chess approach to International Day of Happiness


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

The concept has inspired award-winning business leader David Pollock to personally develop and lead “Happiness Training” at his 550-strong technology solutions organisation, Chess.

The approach has arguably played its part in earning the company an enviable reputation nationally.

Chess recently attained the much-coveted top spot in The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For list (Read more: ‘Chess – officially number one!’) having been in the top 100 for the last nine years.

David was also recognised as ‘Best Leader’ by The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to Work For, retaining the award for the second year running.

His unique Happiness Training in fact won him the ‘Innovation in Business’ award back in 2016.

So, what exactly does this Happiness Training involve? A representative from Chess told us that it is an integral part of the firm’s culture.

David explained: “Just thinking of three things, every day, which have made you happy, fosters a positive outlook – and can make you a better person, a better partner, a better friend.”

“Attitude is key”, he continued. “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 its people with the tools needed to increase their energy and confidence, with as much emphasis placed on mental wellbeing 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’, for staff at Chess, focus on happiness is not just a once-a-year event.

And that’s certainly something worth smiling about. 🙂