A couple of questions for you:
- Do you enjoy going to work every day?
- What would it take for you to enjoy going to work every day?
There’s a lot of research out there that just makes me chuckle. A Lumesse (formerly StepStone Solutions) survey reported in TLNT that only 37% of men and 24% of women enjoy going to work every day.
We could discuss all day various angles of this (Why fewer women than men? What if the question was “most days” and not “every day?”), but setting that aside – is this really surprising?
Then consider research from a Monster Workplace Survey:
- 82% believe there is a dream job for them and 83% of them are actively seeking that dream job
- 41% want to be challenged and inspired in their jobs (with a 17% subset that want to make a difference in that job)
It’s easy to roll our eyes at these expressions, especially in a recovering economy. But indications are numerous that employee productivity is at its limit and employers are going to have to start hiring again just to stay competitive.
And really, it’s not that hard to inspire employees in the jobs they have and help them see how they are making a difference. But it does take intentional effort on the part of leaders to do so. For me, I see the meaning in my work when I know that what I did today helped my company achieve its goals. And I know when I do that because my boss, the CEO, tells me so.
I firmly believe it is the same at all levels of the organization. If you are an intern, and your supervisor takes just a minute to tell you, “Thank you for your work on the McGuffin Project. The timeliness of your reports ensured the client was happy with our delivery” – then you know what you did contributed to the bigger picture. You understand the meaning and value of your work. And I’m sure you’d be like me – inspired to keep doing more.
Am I off-base here? Would such an approach make going to work more enjoyable for you every day?
About Derek Irvine
The VP of Client Strategy and Consulting at Globoforce, Derek Irvine is one of the world’s foremost experts on employee recognition and engagement, helping business leaders set a higher vision and ambition for their organizations. As a renowned speaker and co-author of "The Power of Thanks" and "Winning with a Culture of Recognition," he teaches companies how to use recognition to proactively manage company culture. Derek holds a B.Comm and Masters of Business Studies from the Smurfit Graduate Business School at University College Dublin.