April 28, 2015
A global survey has revealed being happy at work is more important to staff than a high performance, while nearly half of those polled (45%) in the career survey of 1,225 employees worldwide, by Right Management say achieving a work life balance is the most important issue in their career. This was compared to 17 percent who voted ‘being the best at what they do’ as their top career aspiration. More than half of European workers, (55%) aspire to a work life balance, followed by Asia Pacific (37%) and North America (35%). And in terms of age, it is Millennials at 14 percent that are least likely to aspire to be the best at what they do, compared to Baby Boomers (22%) and Gen X (17%). When it comes to success, enjoyment/happiness at work trumps performance and salary: as 26 percent of employees define success in the workplace as enjoyment/happiness.
After happiness, the survey found that 19 percent defined career success by salary, followed by doing the best work (18%), respect and recognition (15%), and high performance (10%).
High performance ranks lowest in Europe (8%) and highest in Asia (14%) – with 12 percent in North America; and across generations, defining workplace success as high performance is reported evenly by Millennials (10%), Gen X (11%) and Baby Boomers (8%).
Respect was cited as an important factor, with over half (53%) of employees saying respect for their knowledge and experience is their top expectation of leadership. Others include mutual trust (51%)), transparency (37%)), learning and development (32%) and a relationship of equals regardless of job title (30%). In Europe, mutual trust is the top expectation of leadership.
Mara Swan, global leader of Right Management and executive vice president of ManpowerGroup said: “People are happy and engaged at work when they are inspired.”
“Understanding employee career motivations and aspirations is key to creating a high performance culture that motivates individuals to do their best work. When individuals experience effective career development through ongoing career conversations with their managers, they are more likely to be engaged, motivated and ready to take on new challenges.”