Recently, students in the “Organizational Behavior” class I teach took a short survey to rate the attributes of Job Satisfaction. The pool of raters was small—just 13—but it offered insight into what college students who work full- or part-time want in order to be satisfied in their jobs.
The highest and most consistent attribute in this—and previous classes—is Flexibility: Work/Life. Autonomy, Independence is the next highest with Feeling Safe close behind. Although Benefits rank fifth, Compensation/Pay is ranked ninth and Career Development fourteenth (there was a tie for fourth place).
These results paint a pretty clear picture of my evening students. Even though students work, take three or four or more college classes, raise a child as a single parent, or cook a meal for family, they want to attain a balance of responsibilities to gain more autonomy and independence. When I asked my students what Feeling Safe meant to them, the responses were about knowing that they could keep their jobs. Yet, Job Security was rated lower.
Below are the results from highest to lowest of the results of the ranking of attributes of Job Satisfaction. The sixteen attributes chosen for this survey were taken from an exercise in the class textbook Organizational Behavior, 14th edition by Stephen P. Robbins and Timothy A. Judge. Each attribute could only be rated once in a unique column. The percentages of raters in different age categories are: 39.3%, 16-22; 23.1%, 23-30; and 46.2%, 31-40 years old. Out of this group, 69.2% were female and 30.8% male.
1. Flexibility: work/life: 12.46%
2. Autonomy, Independence: 10.23%
3. Feeling Safe: 10.15%
4. Culture: 9.46%
4. Relationships: 9.46%
5. Benefits: 9.38%
6. Job Security: 9.0%
7. Management Recognition: 8.54%
8. Work Itself: 8.15%
9. Compensation Pay: 7.92%
10. Communication up/down: 7.77%
11. Career Advancement: 7.31%
12. Meaningfulness: 6.38%
13. Networking: 6.08%
14. Career Development: 5.85%
15. Variety of Work: 4.85%