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What do workers want?

Want to know the way to an employee's heart? Thirty-eight percent of professionals interviewed by OfficeTeam identified work/life balance as the top contributor to their job satisfaction. Opportunities to learn and grow came in second, with 20% of the response.

The survey of professionals was developed by OfficeTeam, a leading staffing service specializing in the placement of highly skilled administrative professionals. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with 210 Canadian workers 18 years of age or older and employed in office environments.

Workers were asked, "Aside from salary, which one of the following aspects of your job is most tied to your satisfaction?" Their responses:

  • Work/life balance 38%
  • Opportunities to learn and grow 20%
  • Camaraderie with coworkers 16%
  • A good relationship with the boss 10%
  • Ability to accomplish goals 9%
  • Don't know 6%

"Professional priorities change over time," said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. "Because there's no one-size-fits-all formula for encouraging job satisfaction, supervisors should get to know their team members individually to better understand what motivates and inspires each of them."

Everyone appreciates the ability to successfully juggle business and personal obligations, Hosking noted. OfficeTeam offers five tips managers can use to help their teams achieve work/life balance:

1. Be flexible. If it's practical for your business, offer alternative work arrangements such as modified schedules or job sharing.

2. Reduce their commute. Give personnel whose jobs can be done remotely the option of working from home, one or more days a week.

3. Watch the clock. Avoid contacting staff outside of office hours, unless the matter is urgent and cannot wait until the next business day.

4. Take a breather. Remind workers to take breaks and vacations. Set a good example by doing so yourself.

5. Bring in reinforcements. Encourage employees to seek help when they are overwhelmed with projects. Use temps, when necessary, to alleviate workloads.



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