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Readers Respond: What Contributes to or Destroys Employee Job Satisfaction?

Responses: 26


Employee job satisfaction has trended lower each year for twenty years. So says a recent survey contracted by The Conference Board. Employee job satisfaction is situational. Employee job satisfaction depends on your company and its practices, your expectations and needs from work, the quality of your supervision, the health of your industry, the competitiveness of the job market, the state of the economy, the success of your company, your mentor resources, and more. The variables are what make employee job satisfaction so challenging. Share what contributes to or destroys employee job satisfaction?

See More Reader Responses to various other questions.

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Nothing has really changed

In my years in HR, the same issues have existed. As long as the executives treat the employees as children - they don't need to know what's going on - or mushrooms - just keep them in the dark, give then some stuff to survive & they will be OK. Where else are they going to go? - there will be problems with engagement. When the current ineffective leaders start learning from the top companies, which also tend to be the most profitable, then there will not be engagement issues. The execs should start listening to the people who do the jobs and then they will learn some new things that will help their employees. They should start talking to their employees and explaining why they can't have cadillac benefits and maybe there would be less discontent.

Hurting Morale

High among the list of causes that destroy morale we often find lack of empowerment. When employees are not given real authority over the tools and actions required to deliver on their responsibility, they feel powerless, distrusted, hopeless. Supervisors at all levels need to recognize that ownership includes both: responsibility and authority (empowerment). Without it, employees are caught on a situation where success is impossible, they recognize this, they lose interest, confidence, trust and give up.
—Guest Pablo Vitaver

Lame employee satisfaction surveys

Stop wasting time on employee satisfaction surveys and try actually listening to your employees for a change.
—Guest deserthackberry

Appraisal and dealing of management

The promotion and increment of salary do not ensure that all of the employees are satisfied in an organization. The other major factors are the staff appraisal process and the dealing of the managers with individual staff. In some cases the managers fail to adopt a professional appraisal process and respond positively to it. Beyond that, the managers cannot change their pre-occupied attitude or behaviour. Thus, they fail to take a fair appraisal process or fail to respond properly to the need of the employees. As the managers possess the authority to set the rules of the games, sometimes they are highly deviated or prejudiced for or against certain employees. Whatever, the result of the survey or appraisal say they take the decision on their own way. Sometimes the managers want to establish a power relationship to govern the organization and knowingly or unknowingly they use some trustee's informations for or against some employee. The trustees may not necessarily provide the right information as expected.
—Guest Vinod Kumar Barai

Breach of verbal contract

I've been working for 15 years in our school. On my tenth year, I decided to go part time, since piano lessons are what I teach. The admin said yes. However, the part time did not actually push through because she gave me more work! Yes, my workshift starts at 10 am, but due to the immense workload, I take it home and do it until midnight! And, I do not get proper compensation for it, and even get rude even violent reactions from her. Each time I would try to resign, she would coax me, but after some time, she would return to normal. That's it, I've had it! Good riddance!
—Guest bhey

Key Are Materials

The materials are key to every Employee and Employer so that the satisfaction can be realized.
—Guest Mike Ouma

Employee Satisfaction

I think employee satisfaction is very much dependant on how the organization is taking care of employees as well as their family and next is work culture and environment in the organisation.
—Guest Balasaheb

Failure to recognize and communicate

We have had several personnel changes in the last year. Now the (instigator) person who is leaving (forced retirement) wants to train all of the new people coming in. Our company knows that she is the reason for all of the turn over on our goofy (hours) shift. Our immediate supervisor is a wimp!! The reason we have had to work so hard (double shifts in 40 hr. straight shifts) is this person. Our shift has such a bad rep. because of these two, I'm surprised to find anyone willing to fill the shift. The shift leader lets certain employees walk all over her, and others she literally chastises for doing what she wants. Upper management in our company knows our shift leader's problems, but lets her get away with it. Both the company and shift leader need to recognize the least squeeky wheel for that contribution rather than the @#$* that does all of the damage and complaining.
—Guest beamsmom

Discriminatory Behavior From Supervisors

In my opinion, when line supervisors show a double standard of behavior with employees of his line or section, those who felt neglected or uncared about, automatically see their efficiency decrease because that demoralizes employees.
—Guest Gokarna

What Satisfies Employees

Being involved in the decision making, autonomy in planning his work,m ade to feel that he is part of the bg picture. Most importantly, when he is consulted and his work/contribution is valued and ideas/suggstions considered.
—Guest drajaganmohanreddy

Efforts to Delegate

I constantly strive to provide tasks and job functions to employees that will increase their awareness of the larger scope of the operation and provide them a sense of satisfaction in completing a job. But, what I find is that I am constantly following up and often completing the project myself or reassigning it to another person because they "don't want to do it". They want to play on the computer, study or just hangout. Hourly wage college students are what my non-profit museum budget allows. :( And the work ethic among today's younger generation is deplorable.


There's this organization where most employees are blood relatives, therefore you lose a sense of belonging when you join. This also affects the level of pay. One earns less irrespective of the qualification and experience simply because one is not related to the "owners" of the business
—Guest Kepher

Move Their Limits

It's interesting to read this post in light of the book I just read, "Hundred Percenters: Challenge Your Employees to Give It Their All, and They'll Give You Even More." The book declares that what people really want is meaningful work that stretches them beyond their current abilities--goals that force them to learn new skills and work hard. According to the research in the book, that's ultimately what motivates people--and the lack of it demotivates and disengages them. It's a contrarian viewpoint that I haven't seen before and is worth considering.
—Guest Heath Davis Havlick

Gain Employee Discretionary Energy

Communication is so important. If you treat employees only as labor costs and not as a valuable part of the whole picture, then you will get what you deserve: an employee who just wants to do enough to get by. Communicate and share your ideas, problems and concerns and they will want to contribute to your success. The smartest person I ever worked for said: If your company is in trouble, give everyone a raise. Share with them what is happening and what they can to do and you will always get the best possible results.

Shift in Value of Employees

I've been working for a government agency for 15+ years and the most disturbing trend is a shift from valuing training, education and training to an environment where management finds fault with employees and instead of coaching and teaching to correct behavior, management uses investigations where management questions employees, analyzes the results and then determines punishment that ranges from verbal reprimand to 2 week suspensions. These consequences are given with no opportunity for the "defendant" to answer to or explain before the punishment is given out. I realize governments are working with tight budgets but controlling a workforce with fear is not the answer. It would be interesting to see how many more people in this environment are on anti-depressants or other medications just to tolerate such a hostile work environment. These tight controls are taking a toll on the loyalty of the staff. People who would have worked for free to finish a project no longer care to help.

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What Contributes to or Destroys Employee Job Satisfaction?

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