Pay, benefits, flexible working – what motivates you and makes you happy at work?
Genuine question. Not easy to answer though. But businesses need to keep asking this question of their workforce to help ensure they recruit and keep the best staff. And we all need to question this ourselves to make sure we are in the right place at work.
There are a number of basic ‘happiness’ factors such as pay and benefits, how much of the intrinsic nature of work itself we find enjoyable, how much boring ‘office admin’ takes up of our time (less is more). But to a large extent these factors are determined by the type of industry or work we have chosen to do; the constraints are inherent in the role and company.
There is also a large push within companies to introduce ‘wellbeing’ schemes. These range from encouraging flexible working, designing ergonomic workspaces, supplying healthy foods and drinks, or encouraging more physical activity with cycling schemes and subsidised gym membership. They all help to create a healthy working environment, which in turn encourages staff to stay and feel motivated.
Other areas which play a part are corporate values and corporate social responsibility. This will help determine whether, at an instinctive level, we feel comfortable working for a company or whether we want to look elsewhere.
But when it comes to happiness at work, most people ask themselves more fundamental questions:
Am I respected and listened to?
Do I have control (within reason) over when and how I do my work?
Do I feel valued?
If I do a good job, will I have an opportunity to progress?