Happy workers are productive workers

It’s safe to say that doing a job that you will be moremotivated to do a job you actually likedoing. This is a not necessarily the same thing as a high-status job that’sspectacularly well-paid, just one that gives you a sense of satisfaction andachievement.

If you want evidence, I give you Indeed’s “Happiness Index.”An international study of job satisfaction rates based ten million of thewebsite’s employee reviews, it found that Australia’s happiest workers aren’tactually doctors, lawyers and bankers, let alone cashed-up CEOs, they’reteachers’ aides, personal assistants, nannies and tutors, while caregivers alsoranked highly.

“We can clearly see that job satisfaction is often notdependent on salary or benefits,” says Indeed’s Chris McDonald. “Pay levelswere consistently ranked below less tangible benefits like the balance peopleare able to strike between their personal and professional life.”

It’s a similar story over in England, according to thebehavioural scientist Professor Paul Dolan. His research found that 79 percent of florists, hairdressers and beauticians are happy at work, compared toless than half of all lawyers and bankers. Job reviews from Fairygodboss, asite where women assess their workplaces, also show that “going up in the world”doesn’t always lead to a rise in morale. “This could be due to many factorssuch as higher expectations, workload, the stress of additional responsibility(or) greater exposure to office politics,” wrote the company’s CEO of the findings,which essentially show that secretaries enjoying life more than managers.

Once upon a time, things would have been different: thelower you were on the corporate ladder, the harder you were expected to work.One of the perks of being a bigwig was all the long, boozy lunches, followed by18-hole rounds of golf.

In many of today’s workplaces, however, that model’s been turnedon its head. A recent Harvard Business School survey found that 94 per cent ofprofessional work at least 50 hours a week and almost half work more than 65hours. The modern high-achiever gobbles down lunch at his desk, and is stillthere when the time comes for dinner. He or she is permanently attached totheir emails, and doesn’t really know what it is to have a weekend off.

For McDonald, while “career paths and compensation stillmatter,” findings like these show that employers “should focus on communicatinghow they help workers achieve a positive work-life balance and the flexibleworking practices that they have in place to ensure their teams stay happy andengaged.”

The Good MBA Guide allows you to explore, compare and enquire to more than 100 MBA and related executive programs from over 50 education providers.