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The Impact of Purposeful Work on Employee Engagement

Many of us view our jobs as incompatible with our well-being. Our “work” is the boring things we have to do so we can enjoy the good things in life, like spending time with loved ones. If only there weren’t so much work to be done, we could focus on what actually matters. Therefore, many strategies for reducing burnout and boosting well-being center on reducing work: restricting access to email, demanding fewer days or fewer hours, and compelling employees to take their vacation time. That is, the less people have to work, the better off they will be.

It’s true that you’ll feel better after spending less time in a negative work environment. However, according to Gallup’s study on employee burnout, the way in which workers perceive their workload is a more significant predictor of burnout than the number of hours worked. It’s clear that providing purposeful work has a significant impact on employee engagement.

Quality of Work vs. Quantity of Work

The quality of one’s work has an effect on one’s well-being that is two-and-a-half to three times greater than the number of days or hours spent at work. In a nutshell, the quality of work is more important than the quantity of effort. Providing higher quality of work can also be a significant driver in reducing quiet quitting.

Importance of Purposeful Work

Those who believe that a life without work is better are mistaken. An essential aspect of living a happy and fulfilled life is doing work that matters. According to Gallup’s global survey, what people want most around the globe is stable employment. Gallup has found five factors that contribute to happiness:

  1. Career well-being: You like what you do every day.
  2. Social well-being: You have meaningful friendships in your life.
  3. Financial well-being: You manage your money well.
  4. Physical well-being: You have energy to get things done.
  5. Community well-being: You like where you live.

For a fulfilling existence, which do you consider crucial?

According to Gallup, job satisfaction is one of the most important factors in determining happiness. Purposeful work significantly impacts job satisfaction and, thus, life in general. Individuals who report high career well-being are over twice as likely to report overall happiness. There’s logic in this – a fulfilling career can boost one’s happiness levels in multiple ways. In addition to the monetary gains, it also gives opportunities for socialization, physical interaction, and local integration. According to Gallup polls conducted in Germany and the United States, most people would continue to work, even if they had so much money that they never had to work again.

Practice What You Preach at the Workplace

Of course, companies aren’t the only ones who can contribute to creating stimulating, fulfilling work environments. Employees should take initiative with their own professional development and actively look for positions that play well with their skills and interests. They can do this by working on projects that they’re passionate about, connecting with mentors, and expanding their professional network throughout the organization. Employees need to realize that their career is more than just a series of jobs; it’s an opportunity for personal and professional development. If employers want to improve employee engagement, they need to be aware of this fact, and providing opportunities for purposeful work is critical for professional development.

How To Take Charge to Achieve Professional Happiness

Set Concrete Career Goals

Setting concrete career goals is one way for workers to take responsibility for their professional development. They can accomplish this by taking stock of their skills, interests, and core values and then matching those up with the profession of their choice. After deciding what they want to do, they can design a strategy to get there by figuring out what knowledge and abilities they still lack. They can look for ways to acquire those capabilities, such as by taking on new duties at work, enrolling in training courses, or expanding their professional network.

Seek Feedback and Learning Opportunities

A second option for workers to take charge of their professional happiness is for them to take the initiative to advance their careers. This means being open to change, actively looking for feedback, and taking responsibility for one’s own growth. Workers who are eager to learn more and take on new challenges are valuable to any company and are more likely to be promoted. Plus, the new skills and experience gained will widen their horizons and serve them well in their present and future jobs.

Prioritize Self-Care

Driven employees should be careful not to take on so much that it will impact their primary role or personal life. Finding a happy medium between professional and personal lives is critical. Realistic hour limits, setting aside time for interests/hobbies, and an emphasis on self-care all contribute to more sustainable happiness in the workplace.

How Managers Can Help Improve Employee Experience

Managers can aid in creating inspiring workplaces by promoting an upbeat atmosphere in the workplace. By encouraging people to share ideas freely, praising and awarding employees for their efforts, and encouraging everyone to treat each other with respect, it is possible to build a strong sense of community at work. Managers can do their part in fostering a positive work environment by advocating for work-life balance and encouraging people to bring their complete selves to the office. Public appreciation and rewards platforms such as PerkSweet can be a great way to take a step in the right direction toward improving the employee experience.

Providing room for professional growth is another strategy to motivate direct reports. Managers can ask about the employee’s aspirations and set up opportunities for professional development to help them achieve these aspirations. Managers can help demystify career advancement by laying out concrete pathways and outlining attainable objectives. In addition to providing guidance and direction, managers can also serve as mentors and coaches.

Importance of Purposeful Work on Employee Engagement

The impact of purposeful work on employee engagement cannot be overstated. The key to preventing burnout and improving the employee experience is creating a space where people can feel valued and appreciated. Happiness in life can be attributed in large part to one’s sense of accomplishment and fulfillment in one’s work. Focusing on the quality rather than the quantity of work, actively seeking out opportunities for personal and professional development, and setting concrete career goals are all things that can help create a better work environment.

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