Job Satisfaction and Home Problems

The concept of Job Satisfaction has been understood in two ways. In a narrow sense, it refers to satisfaction with specific factors in a job such as wages, supervision, co-employees, working conditions and benefits. In a comprehensive sense it refers to a generalized attitude towards the job factors outside the office and individual factors such as problems in home life and one’s emotional adjustment.  In whichever way it has been understood and used, it is in fact true that there is no single factor that may contribute to the job satisfaction or dissatisfaction though the final attitude may be one of the key factor.

All the definitions of job satisfaction stress the comprehensive nature of job satisfaction in one way or the other. I had once read about an experiment and interesting point that was brought to light was that employee’s complaints and object of complaints were not directly related and a sense of relief and satisfaction always followed an outlet of their feelings of frustration when talking to their investigator. It was consequently found that the source of job satisfaction was not limited to job environment alone, but also factors off the job, thus emphasizing the comprehensive nature of job satisfaction. Numerous research studies have been conducted to find the causes and consequences of job satisfaction/ dissatisfaction.

In this post, I have briefly tried exploring the relationship between job satisfaction and problems in home life and have given them a perspective.

To begin with, I have observed that employees who are “most bothered” by personal strain have been found to be less satisfied than employees somewhat bothered and “least bothered”. To a great extent the source of personal strain outside the work place is the distance between home and work place, the facilities available for travelling and domestic responsibilities. Since there will be a constant carryover of personal strain from home to job situation and vice versa, various possibilities of lessening the personal strain of women employees to some extent should be explored and attempted. In India, doing house hold work like cooking is still considered to be a main consideration of women. Even if your spouse understands the burden it puts on his better half, extended family may not understand and hence workload might be high at home front too. To a degree, It has been accepted by women themselves too and they try to manage it before they hit a point of no return where they need to compromise one role over another.

Employees with the most satisfactory social relation in the family have been found to be more satisfied than employees with unsatisfactory social relation. The congenial home atmosphere depends on the extent to which the individual’s need for security, affection, consideration, consultation, and encouragement are satisfied. It comes from a home where there was more family loyalty, unity and good relation with one’s siblings and folks around.

Employees with more financial botheration are found to be less satisfied than employees with less or no botheration. Married women are found to have more personal and financial strain than a single woman and it’s quite obvious in view of greater responsibilities. It increases if there are kids involved.

Employees who have a favorable attitude towards work tend to be more satisfied than with those with unfavorable ones. Many women are still found to be traditionally oriented following the traditional habits and customs. But the job scarcely leaves them with any time to celebrate and participate in such activities with as much enthusiasm as they would have in the absence of job. In such cases women are rather sensitive to the problems created by their employment outside house.

Also, medically it has been shown that nervous people tend to be more dissatisfied though that might not be the sole cause. Nervous people have poor emotional adjustment. Women should learn to rest when they rest and to work without strain when they work. Mental resistances take the form of anger, resentment, worry, anxiety, impatience, annoyance or self pity.

Having said all this, I wanted to quote Staple, another psychologist who concluded that the “concept of job satisfaction, as used today is a confusing one. Our own feelings are that we are measuring something in our respondents which is not necessarily related to the job we happen to have”. It has now been realized that to define job satisfaction is to define human nature itself. Therefore, positive ‘outer atmosphere’ other than the environment at work really plays a significant role in job satisfaction.

By Vandana S Chawla
Principal Consultant – IndiHire

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