“The world of work ain’t what it used to be. The long-held contract between employers and employees has been ruptured. Since we can no longer rely on “the company” for security, it must come from within. For people who know who they are and what they’re called to do, it will be a world of great opportunity. For those who continue to define themselves in terms of the expectations and opinions of others, it will be a world of pain and frustration.” — Joe Tye, Personal Best
Tom fulfilled his father’s dream and became an accountant.
Unfortunately, Tom didn’t enjoy his profession.
He found the long hours and detail rather tiresome.
The job pays well enough, so Tom rationalizes, “I work hard, I’m compensated fairly, so what if I’m not entirely satisfied?”
Work can consume 80% of our waking hours. People who don’t enjoy their work drain vital energy from their lives and long-term earnings may be impacted as well. If you don’t like your work, you are bound to develop a poor attitude. You’ll spend part of your energy working, while in part fighting negative feelings. [Editorial Note: Are you planning an upcoming career transition? Need guidance on where to begin? We can help. Find out more on how career transition coaching can help you.]
You won’t be a star performer; you might not even be seen as a positive contributor which will impact your raise or promotional opportunity. Then, a vicious cycle begins. You get discouraged, your attitude gets worse, and your performance suffers. Getting stuck in this cycle can turn your career sour.
Getting better income on the job begins with job satisfaction.
In a career survey involving thousands of individuals, “those with high job satisfaction always earn more – often 50% or even 100% more.”
There are ways to increase your satisfaction in your present job.
First, work on the communications and relationships at work to make the environment satisfying.
Second, spend your day on tasks you perform well and get rid of the ones you don’t. If that’s impossible, you may be able to transfer to another position somewhere else in the organization or consider a new job with another company.
Once you’ve identified the source of your dissatisfaction, you can move toward an action plan.
Below is a checklist to help you take a look at your level of work satisfaction:
Measuring Your Work Satisfaction
Check all questions that are applicable:
__ Have you considered a career change for over six months?
__ Have duties been taken away from you?
__ Has it been longer than three years since you had a promotion?
__ Are you concerned about job security?
__ Do you feel underpaid?
__ Do you feel unappreciated?
__ Is your job affecting your health?
__ In your present position, are you repeating yourself (not growing in responsibility)?
__ Has a colleague, a member of your family, or a friend suggested you search for another job?
__ Are your duties increasing without a pay increase?
__ Does work interfere with your personal life?
__ Do you suspect a layoff, takeover, or company merger?
__ Are rewards and recognition for your work hard to come by?
__ Are you concerned about the quality of your company’s product or service?
__ Is your company falling behind competitively in today’s tough market?
__ Are you excluded from the decision-making process?
__ Is your present position keeping you from meeting your goals?
__ Are you in need of more income than your job is providing?
__ Have you already mentally shut yourself out from your job?
____ Total Number
1-5 Basically, you’re satisfied. Use those as indicators of where to apply yourself to make your present job better. You may have peaked or begun a transitional period. It may be time to investigate ways to expand. Look within your company first.
6-10 You may discover a new project or opportunity that may use your abilities as well as incorporate your goals.
11 or more Serious work is needed to address your situation. If these things go unchecked, you’ll find yourself one of the first victims of a downsizing, or stuck in a no-growth situation. Again, always work on the present situation along with any job search.