What is Job Satisfaction? Understand Job Satisfaction to Increase Your Own Motivation at Work

What is job satisfaction? Job satisfaction can briefly be described as your feelings regarding your job and how happy do you feel doing your work. It can be affected by many factors like company policies, your relationship with people in the company, how you feel you have contributed to the company and whether you are being appreciated.

The theories of job satisfaction has been studied for many years and not all consultants and researchers tend to agree to one definition of job satisfaction.

They use different tools and criteria to measure job satisfaction. I will show you one below, and mention another so you can use that to further your understand what is job satisfaction.

"What is job satisfaction?"; is quite complex because what we commonly understand as job satisfaction and it being able to increase productivity and performance may not be true.

The reason is because we are dealing with people and personalities. Let me give you an example, if some one is happy pushing paper around all day and you assign the person that work, he may be very satisfied with the job. But will you be using the person to the best of his ability? Likely not. Will that increase job performance? Likely not too.

I have always reiterated - do you do what you love or love what you do. If job satisfaction is really about doing what you love, then there will be a lot of people out there who aren’t very satisfied with their jobs. I am sure even professional athletes, singers and actors will also have days when their job satisfaction is low.

So, even when you aren’t working in your dream career or dream job, you can work at increasing your job satisfaction. Otherwise, there will be a lot of unhappy workers out there. So, what is job satisfaction and how can you learn to increase your own job motivation at work?

There are things you can do to gain job satisfaction. You can look at your own attitude and also expectations. You can also craft your own objectives that can help increase your job satisfaction.

According to Frederick Herzberg, who did research on motivation in the 1950s, he theorized that job satisfactions are influenced by two set of factors. One he called the “hygiene” (dissatisfiers) factor, and another the “motivators” (satisfiers) factor. He said that once the hygiene issues are satisfied, then the motivators are the ones that create job satisfaction amongst workers. The "hygiene" issues are company and administrative policies, supervision, salary, interpersonal relations and working conditions. The "motivators" on the other hand, are the work itself, achievement, recognition, responsibility and advancement.

Now that you know the satisfiers, how can you help mould these - work itself, achievement, recognition, responsibility and advancement - to increase your job satisfaction? Of course, you may not be the decision maker but you can definitely help craft these into your work environment. For example, using it as an initiative to discuss with your bosses what are the things he can do to increase a sense of contribution from the employees, and appreciation from the company? How can you assume more responsibility for your work so you can feel a sense of autonomy and trust from your employer? What sort of career advancement can the company offer you and your colleagues? All these can affect job satisfaction and you can positively affect the job performance in your company.

What is job satisfaction? There is another theory by Douglas McGregor that you may want to research to further your understanding on what is job satisfaction.

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