Filipino employees are in a sad face mode.
In fact, a survey of 9,300 respondents reveals that job satisfaction has dropped to 4.97 from 2016’s 5.25, on a scale of one to 10 (one being the lowest). Twenty-three percent said they would quit.
Why the discontent?
It’s Not Me, It’s You
Filipino employees blame the lack of opportunities, from career development to further training, within an organization. It only makes sense for people to want to move up and onward, to learn more or outside of their scope. Others though want to get tangible rewards.
When you know more than the next employee and are given extra responsibilities, it should mean a fatter paycheck. For 33 percent of the respondents, more money is what would make them happier.
But the dissatisfaction at work isn’t just because opportunities are few and far between; management style can also force an employee to punctuate every chat and social media post with a sad emoji or come into work like you’ve got a permanent frown.
So what do you do when your job no longer makes you get up in the morning (or evening) wanting to break out into a Disney song?
If you’re reckless and not likely to have responsibilities, you’re probably inclined to fire off an email to your supervisor explaining why you’re not coming into work — on the same day. And by the way, that’s not just unprofessional, but potentially sets you up for a journey of abandoning ship whenever life gets hard.
Here’s the thing: quitting isn’t always the answer. It’s not always the answer because:
- You have to eat, drink, and pay rent — and inflation is a female dog
- You have to contribute to your family
- You’ve got dreams, right?
Phoebe Ann Santiago, a trainer for a digital marketing firm in Makati, suggests this easy approach to staying in a job you’re not digging anymore: “Ask yourself why you applied for the job in the first place.” Phoebe, who’s not a stranger to job dissatisfaction, says that recalling your reason for getting into an organization will remind you of your job’s positive aspects. It’s also a simple way of discovering your reason for unhappiness; maybe you’re just stressed, or maybe you’re just unsure of where your career is going.
The bottom line is you’re probably not looking to leave. You just want something in your situation to shift. In Phoebe’s case, it was the need to do something else, something that she’d always wanted to do: to train people and make a difference.
Which brings her to another approach in staying in a job that’s losing favor with you: identify what makes you passionate about your work. She says that even when your happiness is at one percent, finding what drives you to do your job can help you come into work every day. That pathetic one percent will eventually rise.
Once you’ve done your assessment, talk to your supervisor. Schedule a chat with HR. Reach out to coworkers who can give you clearer direction. In short, go to people who can improve your situation. Don’t give in to whining because you’re not 10 anymore. Act because you’re an adult.
When all else fails, and you’re typing different versions of your resignation letter, take a moment to delay that action. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. If your decision carries a substantial effect (e.g., professional record, unemployment) don’t you think it needs some careful thought?
Phoebe’s suggestion is to determine one critical aspect of your job: professional growth. She says that if you’ve remained stagnant and if you have no access to a mentor, then leaving may be your only recourse.
Of course, if you’re in an intolerable, unsafe situation at work, you should leave.
Otherwise, if the compensation is decent, your coworkers make the days fly by, and there are options to make a lateral movement, stay and focus on the positive sides. You’ll find that a change in perspective can sometimes do a lot to turn that frown upside down.
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Joy has been a vegan for over 20 years. She's done a wide range of stories for magazines, from music and movies to business and culture matters. She continues to write professionally to this day — like, right this very minute.