Are You Experiencing Poor Job Satisfaction?
Are you happy with your job?
Are you happy with your job? You may have been asked this question before--by your friends, your family, and maybe even your employer--but have you ever really thought about the answer? If you are like many people, you are probably tempted to automatically reach for a cliché phrase as your answer, something like "Well, is anyone really happy with their job?" This very common answer reveals something about job satisfaction that many employers and employees are unwilling to admit: that people expect to be unsatisfied with their jobs. While some employers--and employees--may see job satisfaction as a pipe dream, an increasing number of studies and research on the topic of job satisfaction have shown that it can have a significant influence on your overall work performance... and even your life outside of work.
It may be surprising, but job satisfaction has been shown to have influences which extend beyond the reach of your working hours. If you have ever experienced low job satisfaction, some of these outside "symptoms" may be familiar to you. Common symptoms experienced by people with low job satisfaction include feelings of depression, frustration, anxiety, and even aggression and anger. These emotions may even lead to even more significant problems, such as substance abuse or alcohol abuse as a means of coping with the feelings that can accompany low job satisfaction. Of course, not every case of poor job satisfaction leads to something as noticeable as an alcohol problem or a diagnosis of depression. But the fact remains: job satisfaction can, and does, have an impact on your life outside of work.
There are many different factors which may occur during the workday that can influence how much, or how little, job satisfaction you actually have. Some of these factors are considerably noticeable, and are probably something that you—or anyone experiencing poor job satisfaction—has already noticed. But some of the factors which can influence how much job ratification someone feels in the workplace are considerably more subtle. The following are some of the most common type so low job satisfaction in the workplace.
You may be experiencing poor, or lowered, job satisfaction if you recognize one or more of these situations as true to your current working environment. Job satisfaction is a complex feeling—it is usually not the result of one specific factor, but a combination of multiple factors.
The Little Things
Have you ever heard the phrase “It’s the little things”? “The little things," or small work related problems which seem insignificant on their own, can--and do--add up to case larger work related problems. Little things include small stressors that, when they occur with a high frequency or during a more serious problem, can cause a significant amount of stress, frustration, and ultimately lower job satisfaction. If you have ever felt yourself saying or thinking “If one more thing happens today!” then this feeling may be familiar to you.
Examples of "the little things" include everyday work problems, such as but not limited to: broken copy machines, not having enough time to finish a cup of coffee during break time, a work environment which is too hot or too cold, and so on. By themselves, these problems are not serious—but if they occur one after another, it can understandably lead to much higher levels of frustration.
No Work Feedback
People enjoy getting feedback about their work--such as hearing what employers thought about their report, proposal, or simply getting feedback on how they are doing in the company. When someone is not getting feedback, or is not receiving any form ofconsistent or regular feedback from their employers, they may perceive this as meaning that their work is not being recognized by their employers. And if their work is not recognized, it may mean that their work is not important or not appreciated. Feeling unrecognized, unappreciated and unimportant can understandably lead to feelings of low job satisfaction.
When does the work day end? Most employees expect their workday to end at the end of their working shift, when they get to go home and unwind from a day of working. However, an increasing reliance on personal technology to communicate, such as sending text messages and emails directly to smart phones, has led to an increasing amount of blur between the end of the work day and the relaxation period which is normally supposed to occur after work has ended. Employers may send their employees text messages, or leave them voice mails, indicating that they need to get certain things done, call certain people, or even finish more work well after they have actually left work for the day. However, when a person is not allowed a work-free period of relaxation, which normally occurs after the end of the work day, this can lead to an increasing amount of stress and frustration—and eventually, work overload.
A common example of post work-overload is employers who allow their clients, or customers, to contact their employees after the workday has ended. The head of an accounting firm may allow their clients to contact their hired accountants after their shift has ended, usually at home through text messages, emails or personal phone calls. This may lead to the accountant having an increased workload due to the clients contacting them after work—cycles which may continue to grow out of control as more clients take advantage of the fact that the employer allows them to contact employees after hours.