Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Gap in the International Workplace

A few days ago we wrote about the multigenerational gap in the workplace for Astronology. As more companies fit into the mode of the global workplace, companies not only have to keep up with laws and policies related to employees internationally, but their different feelings toward work as well. As Marketwatch wrote, a survey, says that gap can be quite significant:

"What is striking about the findings is that the strength of a country's labor market doesn't necessarily correlate with workforce contentment. While workers in challenged markets may have had fewer opportunities to advance in terms of promotions or salary during the recent downturn, it has not necessarily affected their happiness, "said Chris Moessner, Vice President for Public Affairs, GfK. "Clearly there are many variables when it comes to job satisfaction - for example, Canada and Germany have enjoyed buoyant labor markets, yet they lie at completely different ends of the happiness spectrum some of which could be driven by broader cultural differences between the two countries. More generally though, workers internationally want more out of their work and seem to have just settled for their current jobs." 
The issues lie not only in their attitude towards working in general but also their attitudes towards each other and how happiness is defined in those workplaces. In the US, money seems to be a big driver of happiness in the workforce but 22% love their job so much they would do it without being paid at all--or so they say. The most satisfied country with their jobs? India, which came in at only 5% who claim to dislike/hate their jobs. The key is to figure out what makes them like it as much as see if that can be distributed across the different countries in your workforce. If not, figure out what makes people happy in each country and work towards that--even if it means slight unevenness across offices.

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