There is no avoidance when it comes to the fact that work can be stressful. A demanding and busy job which leaves you feeling exhausted at the end of the day, however, does not necessarily equal unhappiness. On the contrary: most individuals feel satisfaction when they have made it through a busy day and achieved all they wished to achieve. So what does influence unhappiness or dissatisfaction in the workplace?

What Makes a Happy Workplace?

No matter the industry or work environment you’re in, there are fundamentals to your working life which significantly influence your happiness.

Feeling Appreciated

Even the most mundane and uneventful tasks can seem a whole lot more bearable if you are thanked for them. Having employees who feel underappreciated and overlooked can have a serious effect on workplace mood, morale, and the risk of employees seeking work elsewhere. A happy workplace should have an ongoing review and feedback system in place, with regular employee appraisals and the opportunity for further responsibilities and pay bonuses.

Having a Wage Which Reflects Your Responsibilities

Nobody likes to be overworked and underpaid. Having a severely limited paycheck which doesn’t add up fairly to the work you carry out can have a significant impact on your working mood – which continues outside of the office walls and into your personal life, too. As outlined by Hiscox in their blog regarding career-related satisfaction, wage amount can severely affect whether individuals look forward to their job or not.

Working in a Safe Environment

Safety at work can fall into several categories. It can be the legal workplace safety of a practical environment to undertake your work without any hazards or risks, and the ability to use all equipment safely. It can also mean the emotional aspect of feeling comfortable and safe with all working staff, without feeling intimidated or bullied. A safe environment should also include a designated manager or authority member who employees can speak to regarding any issues. Without this, employees can feel unhappy and vulnerable in their duties.

The Opportunity for Personal Development

All employees want to feel as though they can develop in their job role. A dead-end job with lack of meaning is the surefire road to discontent. Happy workplaces benefit from opportunities to learn more and develop new skills. Employees react more positively to ways in which they can better themselves, especially within their career.

Even if individual employees choose not to take advantage of development opportunities such as further training or promotions, the fact that these opportunities are available already creates a fulfilling and encouraging atmosphere.

Having Meaning

Nobody wishes to feel as though they are working in a position which holds no meaning. Even the most basic and monotonous of tasks can be bearable when they have an obvious and important purpose. Yet, employees constantly expected to fulfill tasks which have no apparent meaning can be detrimental to their positive mental health. This can be made worse if no feedback, appraisals or recognition is given, leaving an employee to feel as though they are completing a meaningless task which not even management cares enough about to say thank you for.

iLounge author Lucy Bennett

Lucy Bennett is a Contributing Editor at iLounge. She has been writing about Apple and technology for over six years. Prior to joining iLounge, Lucy worked as a writer for several online publications.