Sadly, a recent worldwide survey by Gallup revealed that 85% of people are unhappy in the workplace. Low job satisfaction can be caused by several factors such as a poor work-life balance, too much stress, and a lack of career progression.
Fortunately, there are things you can do to boost your job satisfaction. Here are seven tips to be happier at work:
1. Find a career that you enjoy
According to mvorganizing.org, “the average person spends a third of their life working.” Most people spend most of their adult life working, so you need to find a job that you enjoy. Most people get enjoyment out of their career by finding a job that uses their skills, or by choosing a career path that they find personally fulfilling.
Remember the famous line: “If you find a job you love, you’ll never work again…” Carefully consider your skills, interests and passions, and find a job that you will find rewarding long-term. You can take career tests online or book an appointment to speak with a career advisor for guidance – these can help focus your attention on the parts you enjoy not just those you are good at.
2. Acquire new qualifications
Acquiring new qualifications can boost your job satisfaction by enhancing your skills and knowledge. You will be able to complete your work tasks more efficiently and you’ll be more confident in your abilities in the workplace. Completing qualifications is also a great way to invest in your professional development. It will show your passion and give you a competitive advantage when senior positions become available.
For instance, qualified nurses can enroll in an MSN to DNP program to advance their skillset and transition into senior clinical roles. Securing a promotion will give you a great sense of accomplishment and you may enjoy other benefits like an increase in salary and flexible work hours. Take advantage of qualifications and training on offer and be proactive when it comes to your professional development.
3. Discuss your professional goals
Setting professional goals will motivate you and make you feel more in control of your career. You should discuss your goals with your employer and make them aware of your expectations and ambitions. You will find it easier to take your job to the next level and feel happier at work if you are open and honest about your feelings and desires.
4. Ask for regular feedback
Receiving feedback about your work is always positive. It can either make you feel valued by acknowledging your hard work and achievements, or it can help you identify gaps in your skills and help you improve your work performance. Feeling valued plays a big role in workplace happiness and developing yourself professionally can also help you feel more satisfied in your job role.
Ask your manager for regular feedback on your work if you don’t feel like you’re getting enough. You should always ask for feedback at the end of a project or major work task.
5. Maintain a work-life balance
No matter how much you enjoy your job, you still need to have a life outside of work. Maintaining a healthy work-life balance is extremely important, as trying to do too much is likely to cause stress and burnout. This will harm your health and happiness, both inside and outside of the workplace.
Here are some simple ways to achieve a good work-life balance:
- Create set work hours and stick with them.
- Avoid taking work home with you unless it’s essential. Try not to respond to work messages and emails outside of work hours.
- Pursue your hobbies and interests outside of work, for example go to the gym, meet up with friends, plan trips and vacations.
- Speak to your employer about the possibility of trialing flexible work hours so you have more freedom over your work schedule.
- Prioritize your time in the workplace to maximize productivity and avoid procrastination.
- Take regular breaks during the day to unwind and de-stress in a calm environment.
6. Build relationships with co-workers
Work friendships play a vital role in workplace happiness and satisfaction. A survey by CNBC found that “70% of employees consider friends at work to be the most important factor in a happy working life, and 58% would turn down a higher-paying job if they didn’t get on with their new colleagues.”
Your colleagues can provide a valuable support network when you are feeling stressed and social interactions can boost your workplace happiness. Many people choose to stay in their current job roles because they have close bonds with their co-workers. Make an effort to build relationships with your colleagues and you will feel more supported and engaged in your job role.
7. Start job hunting
If doing the above does little to lift your mood in the workplace, then you may be stuck in an unfulfilling work environment. If you feel that things can’t improve in your current role, then you should start job hunting and look for new opportunities that will bring you happiness.
Assess your employer, your role, and your entire career to decide what job will be a good fit for you. Actively searching for new job opportunities that are in line with your passions and interests will put you in control of your career and make work more enjoyable.
Many companies offer perks like free lunches and bonuses to boost employee satisfaction, but you should arrange your life to be happy at work. You don’t necessarily have to love your job, but it shouldn’t make you unhappy.
If you feel miserable or stressed at work regularly, then you might be stuck in a toxic work environment and unfulfilling role. Take the plunge and look into the new job opportunities out there. Explore what is available and find something that is a good fit for you.