Today we're asking experienced workers to rate their job satisfaction now compared with 20 years ago. Please vote.
Whenever I’m in a conversation that turns to work, unless I am among the most “positive” brightsiders or wealthy folk, people talk about how their job satisfaction has declined. To be sure, this is usually baby boomers or early Gen Xers. But it takes time for individuals to assess changes in their working lives.
What’s gotten worse? Pay, benefits, bureaucracy, pressure to do more with less, chasing fads, the intrusion of legal and human resources departments, the rise of the “always be selling” culture seemingly everywhere, and management that is more distant, removed from the reality of the work, and filled with new layers. Most of all: “The job used to be fun.” It’s remarkable how these conversations encompass people from so many different lines of work and life paths.
This is anecdotal, of course. Last year, a Pew Research Center poll found most Americans satisfied with their jobs, although with big differences across occupations and industries. To my knowledge, Pew also didn’t ask today’s question.
So, ahead of Labor Day — and on the honor system — how has your job satisfaction changed from 20 years ago?
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This Week’s Links:
• Inside the August employment report | CEPR
• How workers are navigating the gig economy | Miami Herald
• Who are today’s union members? | Economic Policy Institute
• Is poor health hindering economic growth? | Atlanta Fed
• Adam Smith on the benefits of public education | Tim Taylor
• Zoning: Both sides get it wrong | Paul Krugman
• It’s a myth that corporate tax cuts mean more jobs | NY Times
• Oregon’s regional recovery gathers steam | Josh Lehner
Today’s Econ Haiku:
Wells Fargo again
A new fake accounts scandal
Runaway stage coach