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The importance of ‘purpose’ in the workplace

The importance of ‘purpose’ in the workplace

The importance of meaning at work – Why do your employees choose to do the jobs they do? 

Just for the Pay?  The chance to work for a good cause? Are they answering a vocation or enjoy the monotony?  

These are examples of work values – and they have a significant impact on employees job satisfaction, and the success of businesses and teams. 

Being aware of your workers values, how they arrive at decisions on the importance, worth, or usefulness of something — gives you strategic insights into managing your teams, and in hiring the ‘best fit’  We know that workers are happier when their values align with their career choices, according to Jaime Klein, founder of consulting firm Inspire Human Resources.

So, what are these values?

Well, they aren’t always obvious: “Values are one of the first things I work with my clients on, largely because I think people have a hard time identifying them,” says Amy Wolfgang, CEO at Wolfgang Career Coaching.

And they can be different for everyone: 

“What’s important to one person may not be important to someone else,” says Karen Litzinger, business etiquette and career coach. 

And workers values often change over time: “People right out of college are often focused on getting a high-paying job so they can pay back their student loans, but that focus can shift later in their career,” says Litzinger.

To help your workers identify your current work values, Monster created these three checklists. Just working through and considering these yourself – or as a team exercise, can really help with motivation and understanding. 

Intrinsic values

These are the intangible rewards that keep you motivated and engaged at your job. Intrinsic values can make you wake up in the morning and still look forward to work even when the weather’s lousy, the news is horrendus, and your commute is an over-crowded expensive nightmare.

On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being most important, rank how important these intrinsic values are to you:

  • Having a variety and change at work. Some people get bored doing the same thing day in, and day out, while others prefer having a set routine at work, Litzinger says.
  • Helping others. Working for a company with a good cause is a top priority for many workers, says Klein. Indeed, more than half of Millennials said a company’s charitable work influenced them to accept a job offer, recent survey by research and creative agency Achieve found.
  • Feeling respected at work. In a recent survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 65% of workers said the respectful treatment of all employees is an essential factor of job satisfaction.
  • Taking risks. Some people, like airline pilots, are thrill-seekers, “while other people are more risk-averse,” Litzinger says.
  • Having your work recognised. Public recognition, particularly from managers, is a priority for many employees.

Extrinsic values

These are the tangible rewards or conditions you find at work, including the office setting, holiday policy, and earnings potential

On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being most important, rank how important these extrinsic values are to you:

  • Travelling for work. The daily grind in the same cubical can take its toll—especially on those who love to travel. Chances are, the younger you are, the more pumped you are to find a job with travel perks. According to a recent survey by Hipmunk, 38% of Millennials travel for business, compared to just 23% of Gen Xers and 8% of baby boomers.
  • Collecting a big paycheck. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to make a good living. Monster’s Salary Search tool let you search for salary information based on job title and location.
  • Setting your own hours. Want an employer with a flexible work policy? You’re not alone. Aside from salary, 40% of Monster users said good work-life balance is the most important factor for job satisfaction, a recent poll found.
  • Time off work. Even with statutory holiday allowances, company policies may allow for additional incentives and days off. 
  • Having autonomy at work. Don’t want someone hovering over your shoulder, watching your every move? Certain jobs are tailored for people who like to work independently.

Lifestyle values

These are the personal values associated with where you want to live, how you choose to spend your free time, and your long-term life goals.

On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being most important, rank how important these lifestyle values are to you:

  • Spending time with friends and family. This goes back to work-life balance; your job has a direct impact on your ability to spend time with your family. Finance jobs, for instance, generally entail long hours and working nights and weekends.
  • Location. Some people thrive on the hustle and bustle of city life, whereas others prefer a quieter pace of living in rural areas.
  • Living abroad. A significant minority of people would like to live and work abroad.
  • Saving money. This can be a challenge if your job doesn’t pay well and/or requires you to live in an expensive city.
  • Becoming a homeowner. Whether you can afford to buy a home often depends on where you’re living and how much money you’re saving.

Once they have completed all three checklists, look at the values that were rated as 5s—these are the top work priorities. The values  listed as 4s and 3s are still important, but they shouldn’t be at the top of your consideration when managing the environment. 

Finally, spend some time writing down ways your teams top values could be reflected in the work environment. This will help you improve communications, and give a deeper understanding of how the cogs in your team work – allowing you to find the ‘good fit’ when you are hiring. 

Wondering how to find a “Good Fit” for your next hire?

Monster’s unique solutions reach and engage the quality talent who are right for your position.

  • Stand out from the competition with Monster Studios –  The most powerful way to find the right fit –  easily produce and add video, for free, to every job ad. (Camera shy? No problem! )
  • Book your demo  for SearchMonster  More than just next generation CV search engine. Find talent faster, then efficiently create and manage customised email campaigns.
  • If you don’t have much time or are short of resources, get expert help: Watch the 3 reasons you should be using Monster Talent Consulting.

Still not sure where to get started? – Call us today on 0800 781 4377 for a chat!