Half Of Americans Unhappy In Their Jobs
When The Conference Board reported in mid-September that Americans are growing more unhappy with their jobs, it wasn’t a surprise to career professionals, the people who coach and counsel employees and the unemployed on career strategies.
“Today’s workplace is a different world than it was even just one year ago,” says Teresa Daly, president of ACP International, a global organization with members in more than 30 countries who provide lifelong career-related services. “Every employee is asked to do more, and there is no immediate reward for this extra work other than continued employment. And, there’s nothing on the horizon to make workers think it will get better in the future.”
The Conference Board survey found that fewer than half of Americans say they are satisfied with their jobs — the highest level of discontent since the survey was first conducted in 1995. Only one worker in five is satisfied with the promotions and bonus plans at their companies, and only about one in three is content with wages.
The findings mirror the overall mood of the nation, as The Conference Board’s latest Consumer Confidence Index released September 30 showed a five-point drop to 76.8 on the 100-point scale.
“The people our members counsel are telling us they are unhappy,” Daly continued. “Work is central to the self-esteem of most people, and when they’re unhappy at work it usually means they are unhappy in life. Career professionals can help individuals rediscover what they’re really good at and help them find more satisfaction in the working world.”
The issue of worker satisfaction is also critical for businesses — unhappy workers don’t make for a productive business. “Companies need to understand that American workers have taken a beating these last few years,” Daly declares. “Besides the increased demands in their jobs, many of them are watching jobs moving overseas, out of their reach.”
She says that ACP International career professionals, many of whom have advanced training and certification in employee counseling and coaching, can work with a company to help their employees regain lost morale and productivity.
“Things haven’t been easy for businesses, either,” Daly says. “They need to focus on profitability and staying in business. But our people can come in and help re-energize their workforce, which is critical to their success.”