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Measure what irks and perks employees, but remember the happiness “set point”

To take the temperature every now and then of a law department’s employees, to find out what they like and dislike, to measure employee satisfaction are all worthwhile. The findings might lead to improvements.

Even so, “according to positive psychologists, the most important determinant of happiness is our ‘set point,’ a natural level of happiness that is … largely inherited.” From the Neuroethics & Law Blog posted on Feb. 24, 2006 I understand one’s set point is a baseline of personal happiness that stays pretty close to that setting most of the time and returns there even after glorious wins or crushing losses.

If a law department’s morale stems from the composite of its members’ individual set points, it may prove difficult to materially budge that point.

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