by Karen Ryan, Director - Temporary & Contracting Recruitment, Moir Group
We built Moir Group 7 years ago, with the above statement as our foundation and we continue to grow with this goal firmly guiding our path.
Recently it has got me thinking. What does it really mean to have a life that is fulfilling and a job that satisfies? Being a recruitment organisation and given I have been in the industry for many years now, I thought I might draw on experiences both personally and with clients and candidates, to explore this further.
On the surface, one may expect a satisfying job to be all about the pay, the title and the career opportunities. For some, these things are fundamental in accepting a new role and then being successful in this role
Underpinning these however there is a softer, emotional side that really seems to affect nearly all people we place in roles, and also the roles we recruit.
Thinking first about satisfying jobs. Individuals like to feel needed and they enjoy being listened to and valued. This applies no matter your level in an organisation and whether you are more introvert or extrovert in nature. I think it is a core human desire.
Most individuals also like to be trusted and able to trust others around them.
They need to relate to the culture of the organisation both in regards to how the business treats and respects their specific discipline as well as the broader corporate cultures effect on them as individuals.
Just to digress a moment, I am lucky to have a HSC student in our house in 2014 and the theme for English this year is “Belonging”. It seems this has been the English theme for a few years now and here we are asking our young adults to explore the importance of “belonging” by studying and comparing classic and modern novels and movies and creating their own creative writing stories on the same theme.
This cuts to the core of human happiness. One wants to belong and feel a part of something. For job satisfaction, it is the same. You spend many hours a week with your work colleagues and it doesn’t matter your role, you want to feel a part of something and know that what you are doing is valuable.
In roles where people don’t have this sense of belonging, it really is irrelevant how much you pay them or what title you give them, they wont be satisfied in their roles. When people are unhappy, it can lead to miscommunication, internal gossip and negative energy that then often moves on to affect the bottom line of a business, as the core begins to rot.
Instead, build a business and create an environment where people feel they belong. This will in turn create satisfaction and positive energy.
This doesn’t mean everyone can belong in every place and it doesn’t mean where you belong wont change with time. What it does mean is you can better understand what you and those around you are actually looking for and how this affects their behaviour.
Think about the times when you or a colleague has left a role or organisation. Think of those specific examples. When I do that I can see that for one reason or another that person felt they were no longer needed or adding value. They sometimes felt under valued. This can then affect their work and no matter how hard they try to improve or impress things rarely change. They have sometimes lost the trust of colleagues and managers to succeed and that makes it even harder to turn things around. It is not a bad thing. Sometimes it is time to go and find your satisfaction level again. Alternatively give the person a new challenge and feeling of trust and belonging and you will see the positive results.
This is also a good reason to really think hard on relying too heavily on references. I know this is a big call and I very much agree with technical and personal references when hiring people. The only thing is to use them more as a guide on how to manage someone new or get the most out of them, rather than to judge too harshly if there were some issues. If someone has been with an organisation a long time, sometimes asking more about the journey they had in that organisation and the contributions they made along the way, rather than focusing purely on reason for leaving, may add value to your hiring process.
Everyone deserves a chance to find the ideal place for them and once found they are likely to have job satisfaction and perform highly in the role.
You all went to school and some might be living it again through your children. Think back to what you liked about school. When you had a group to belong to and felt valued and that you were learning and that you could share ideas with others, you were happy. Children who feel left out or undervalued by friends or teachers tend to be the unhappy ones.
It doesn’t mean they can’t succeed in a different environment. Maybe school structure wasn’t for them and we all know of highly successful and happy people who moved from a certain environment to a different path and found their way.
There are many life examples where being needed, valued and belonging guide your sense of well-being and happiness. When children leave home, some parents lose their sense of feeling needed in the home; when an aging parent passes, the prime carer may feel lost for many years, no longer having a purpose of caring for another.
Life is a journey and a satisfying job is a big part of making ones life feel worthwhile. Even though work is just one part of your overall life, it does take up the majority of your time. Other elements including family and friends also contribute to ones life being fulfilling. Some enjoy material success and even that is a way of feeling needed and valued. They can provide and they like to show others that too and it helps them belong to certain groups.
Whether your job is paid or unpaid, stay at home or in an office, or even the job of being a student, the need for belonging and having satisfaction in your job relates to you and to those around you.
If you know you feel like this then recognise others do too and understand their desire to be needed and valued. Make them feel worthwhile and say thank you and let them know that they belong in your world. Be it work, family or friends this approach will create a positive vibe around you and allow others to feel satisfied and fulfilled and this will flow onto you and your circle of life and happiness.
Life is here to enjoy and why not let others and yourself strive for a satisfying job and a fulfilling life. I know I do!