Episode 49: Annie McKee, Author of ‘How to Be Happy at Work: The Power of Purpose, Hope and Friendship’

Dr. Annie McKee is a best-selling author, respected academic, speaker and advisor to top global leaders. As a Senior Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, she teaches and leads the PennCLO Executive Doctoral program and the MedEd Master’s program. As coach to executives in Fortune/FTSE 500 companies and organizations around the globe, Annie uses a person-centered approach to help leaders develop their emotional intelligence, enhance their strategic thinking abilities, and build resonant cultures. 

On this episode, Annie shares ideas from her newest book, How to Be Happy at Work: The Power of Purpose, Hope, and Friendship. As such, we discuss the happiness crisis in the workplace and how we in HR can work to combat it. Tune in for a very in-depth and fascinating discussion!


  • Using positive emotions to move people
  • Developing self-awareness
  • The basis of her research for her newest book
  • How our beliefs about work are outdated
  • Burning out
  • Understanding your emotional quotient and how to wield it effectively


“Over time, if became utterly apparent to me that it wasn’t IQ that was making a difference…it was their ability to understand themselves and understand other people and to use their emotions to move people.” -Annie McKee

“When we’re in a negative emotional register, we don’t think as well, we don’t give of ourselves…” -Annie McKee

“Our organizations are high-pressure…and it is really easy to never stop, especially if you love your job.” -Annie McKee


How to Be Happy at Work: The Power of Purpose, Hope, and Friendship

Happiness Traps: We Sabotage Ourselves at Work Harvard Business Review article

Primal Leadership

Becoming a Resonant Leader

Management: A Focus on Leaders

Annie on Twitter

The Emotionally Intelligent Recruiter