Can’t get no satisfaction at work? Lack of work satisfaction is one of the major causes for workplace stress, a high rate of absenteeism and a high company turnover. But is it you or the workplace that is making you feel this way and holding you back from achieving workplace happiness? Before handing in your notice, read these seven tips on you can increase your job satisfaction.
Identifying triggers for your personal work satisfaction
Psychologists have distinguished there is a link between your attitude to work and work satisfaction. They have identified three basic approaches to work and what motivates people to come to work. This could be a job, a career and a calling and each brings certain motivators and triggers for job satisfaction.
- Job: You do a job for nothing other than the pay cheque at the end of the week. This will have the greatest impact on whether you stay or go and achieve work satisfaction.
- Career: This involves a deeper personal investment in work. You mark your achievements through money, but also through advancement. Each promotion brings you higher prestige and more power, as well as a raise.
- Calling: A calling or vocation, on the other hand, is a passionate commitment to work for its own sake. The work is fulfilling in its own right, without regard for money or advancement.
Identifying the triggers for your job satisfaction, will help you to identify and adjust your expectations at work accordingly and find a job, career or calling that will bring you the most work satisfaction in line with those goals and aspirations.
Nature of the work vs nature of the job
The secret to job satisfaction? It’s not just about the work you do, but the people you do it with, according to a study published on March 2010 in the online Journal of Applied Psychology. The authors expected to find that the nature of the work affected job satisfaction, but they were surprised that social factors were even more important to work satisfaction.
Frequent interaction with others, office friendships and emotional support were strong predictors of job satisfaction. So the next time you want to skip out on office work drinks or miss out on a birthday lunch, take the time to bond with your colleagues and this may increase your workplace happiness and work satisfaction.
Pinpoint the exact problem of your work dissatisfaction
It’s important to find out why you are unsatisfied at work and the cause of your unhappiness. What exactly are you struggling with? This may be one central problem or a combination of problems.
Is it due to difficult co-workers, a long commute to work, poor working conditions, working excessive hours or your job role? Once you work out the exact nature of your unhappiness, you will be able to work out a course of action and tackle the problem head on.
Accept that workplaces are not perfect
It’s inevitable that you will be working with people where there may be a personality clash or you may not have any common ground or interests. The beauty of being human is we all have different communication styles, personality traits, and ways of thinking and doing things.
You don’t have to necessarily want to party with your colleagues on Friday night although that does help but you do have to maintain a level of professional courtesy, accept the inevitable personality differences and be respectful of your different working styles.
Revaluate your work goals
Perhaps your unhappiness at work is due to unfulfilled personal and professional goals. Remember this may only be a stepping stone to your dream job. Find ways to ease the boredom of your role and create new challenges for yourself within the scope of your role. This may include the following:
- taking on a new and exciting project;
- volunteering for new tasks;
- furthering your education and training;
- mentoring a new employee can also improve work satisfaction.
Working with a different team or department, focusing on your career development and improving your skills development may give you a fresh perspective and increase your work satisfaction.
Maintain a work-life balance
Those unhappy in life are unlikely to find satisfaction at work, a new study published in the Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology in March 2010 says.
Keeping a balance in your lifestyle is important; if it’s all work and no play, you may find your enthusiasm starting to wane. In order to maintain balance in your lifestyle, the first step is to take an overview of your current lifestyle and see which areas are out of balance.
You should make for other important priorities in your life such as family, friends and other hobbies and interests such as the gym. Overtime is a necessary evil but if you find that it is the exception and not the rule, you need to take stock of your work situation and bring your life back into balance.
Before a lack of job satisfaction turns you to drinking, take a ‘glass half full’ mentality and look at the positives of your workplace. Walking in with an optimistic attitude and see if changing detrimental and negative talk patterns can help you see your situation more clearly – it may not be as bad as you think.
Assess your current state of mind, and make some changes in yourself so that you see things in a more positive light, and you may just find you’re much happier where you are in life!
There are just a few of the things that may change your outlook and increase your work satisfaction. If you’re hopping from workplace to workplace and you find the same problems cropping up, you may just find the common denominator is you! So find out what motiviates you to come to work, what makes you happy or unhappy and face the real cause of your problems.