By Anthony Olwoch
JOB satisfaction is one thing that every employee desires to attain and experience in their career.
It is an indispensable factor that ignites intrinsic motivation and provides a fertile ground for creativity. It also boost performance and productivity, which in turn benefit the workplace.
Experts say job satisfaction is a result of both intrinsic (the kind of tasks that make up the job) and extrinsic (conditions of work such as co-workers, pay and supervisors) factors.
The quest for job satisfaction needs to start from the time one is deciding their career path, planning to change from one career to another or job-hunting.
Joyce Akello, a human resource expert in town, says the first step towards job satisfaction is choosing a career that involves tasks that you love to do.
â€œIdentify the kind of work tasks that you feel would give you satisfaction regardless of the various challenges that you may encounter,â€ she advises.
Also look for information that give details on the job that you think would meet your expectations.
â€œHowever, it is important to have realistic expectations because it is nearly impossible to attain overall job satisfaction.
You should not expect 100% job satisfaction or 0% dissatisfaction. So, it is important to be clear on what you expect from a job,â€ adds Akello.
Examining your values and knowing the importance your job will help you focus on your career path objectively.
This is helpful because it will give you strength to endure present dissatisfactions if your career is progressing well.
Akello notes that job satisfaction is derived from ones approach to work. When work is approached as a career, then moving up the career ladder becomes oneâ€™s interest.
You then relish the power or prestige that come with it.
But when work is seen as a calling, then fulfillment of oneâ€™s work responsibilities becomes the source of satisfaction. â€œYou donâ€™t work for money or career advancement, but for the fulfillment the work brings.â€
Lastly, when you take work as a job, then the primary focus is on the financial rewards. Here, it is the money that brings satisfaction and not the type of job.
So when a better paying job comes along, the chances are high that one will most likely move on.
In the event that you are unsatisfied with your job, it is important to recall what originally drew you to your current job, and whether it may be a factor in your lack of job satisfaction.
Akello notes that there are many factors that may be responsible in causing you to sour on your job.
These may include: lack of opportunity for promotion, low pay, when work is overly routine leading to boredom, conflict with supervisors or co-workers and when the work does not match up with your interests, skills or education among others.
These can be a significant source of daily stress. Experts say there are strategies that can help improve job satisfaction depending on the underlying cause. These may include:
After assessing your skills, interests and passions, setting new challenges can yield tremendous results. For instance, try to improve your skills in your present job.
Imagine yourself in your dream job by envisioning yourself as a competent manager-one who is highly organized with great communication skills.
When boredom due to routine is the cause of your job dissatisfaction, you can reap immense rewards by;
Mentoring an intern or a new co-worker can restore the challenge and satisfaction you desire.
Breaking up monotony by taking advantage of your work breaks to read, listen to music or write a letter.
Volunteering to do something different. For instance, you can volunteer to be part of the work team when you hear your company is launching a new project.
You may also talk to your supervisor about new challenges you can take on or seek a new position. Always remember that boredom can literally be deadly if your job involves working with machinery or caring for people.
Use positive thinking to reframe your thoughts about your job. Your attitude may not change overnight but it is worth the effort.
You can achieve this by: paying attention to the messages originating from your mind and stopping the negative thoughts about your job in its tracks, looking for the silver lining (find the good in a bad situation), being grateful, and learning from the mistakes you make at work.
Endeavour to always put things in perspective. This is necessary because even with your dream job, you will encounter good days and bad days on the job.
Never allow your dissatisfactions to go unresolved for long. They may lead to worse situations that may include depression, anxiety, worry, tension and interpersonal problems.