Updated: See bottom of this post
From the BBC:
Read the full article “UK office staff ‘unhappy at work'” here.
What is it about us Brits at the moment? This is the second article published this week that says we’re all a miserable bunch who hate our jobs and would take a pay cut if we were happier. Is it because the sunshine has now gone and the April showers are here in May? Or maybe it goes a bit deeper than that?
We’re faced with pressure from all aspects of our working (and home) life. Everything has to be measured and quantifiable, our existence in our workplace needs to be justified in terms out output (whether that be unit or cost based), we strive to make ourselves invaluable so our jobs won’t be outsourced or offshored and for what exactly? A crappy pension (if you’re lucky) and an ulcer (if you’re not).
But, employers had better beware because we employees have obviously started to see the light. If you ran the two surveys I’ve linked to ten years ago, I bet that the results would have been drastically different. Gone are the Yuppies of the 1980’s and early 1990’s; We (as a workforce) are becoming more aware that there’s more to life than fast cars and wads of cash.
So, what does this mean for employers? Well, if the survey in the Daily Telegraph is to be believed then our employers can throw all the money at us they want (Ha! don’t I wish!) and it wouldn’t make a blind bit of difference, what we’re looking for is quality of life. The problem is that what I consider quality (being able to lie in bed until midday) may not be what you call quality (having flexi-time so you can start and finish early). This causes a problem for employers where they have to be very careful not to be seen giving one employee perks over another for fear of being sued – it sure is a tough one!
What we as employees could all benefit from is being allowed to develop within the workplace. I’m not talking about being put on a management training scheme or presentation skills course but rather personal development. Allow us to take a longer lunch break so we can help serve lunch in a soup kitchen or take a course in tai-chi; Whatever benefits the employee will ultimately benefit the company.
Remember a happy employee is a more motivated and therefore productive employee.
Update: The following article, “French Workers are the world’s biggest wingers”, was just posted up at “Management Issues”
Perhaps us Brits aren’t too bad after all