Workplace Ailments and Ways to Avoid the Pitfalls
Work matters – from our compensation that controls our personal finances to our job satisfaction that can ultimately affect our mental and physical health or even non-work relationships. We’ve always known that our work was an important part of our lives (that’s why we launched Glassdoor.com), but a recent article in the Indianapolis Star got us thinking about how to become more aware of the options we have when things at work don’t always seem to work out.
Using research recently conducted by Harris Interactive, we pulled a few insights into common workplace “spillover effects” and how we hope to help you avoid them.
1. Salary Sharing Phobia
In some parts of the world, “how much do you make?” is as common as “where do you live?” or “what do you do?” In the U.S., however, salary phobia is so common in company cultures that it makes it difficult (if not impossible) to find out whether you’re being fairly compensated. From our research, about one in ten (11%) employed adults say they are not comfortable discussing their compensation with anyone and fewer than one in four are comfortable talking about compensation with co-workers. It seems we are clearly more comfortable discussing salary with those outside of work, including spouses/significant others (64%) or best friends (32%).
With Glassdoor, we’ve provided an anonymous community to share information about compensation among peers, thus we’ve appealed to the more than half (52%) of employed adults that say they’d be willing to share more details about their compensation if they could do so anonymously.
2. Interview Schizophrenia
Have you ever taken a job and found it was different than what you expected coming out of the interview process? You’re not alone. Nearly two out of three workers (64%) say they’ve found the reality of a new job different than what they expected from the hiring process. Of those who found a gap in job reality, the top 5 areas different than their expectations were:
- Job responsibilities (43%)
- Hours expected to work (42%)
- Treatment of employees – fairness and respect (42%)
- Employee morale (41%)
- Boss’s personality (40%)
There should be no need for this guesswork when it comes to one of the most important aspects of our lives. Which is why we encourage every job seeker to give us a try – whether its to identify the questions you need answered during an interview or it’s to get comfortable with that offer you’re about to accept – why wouldn’t you take a look inside to see what their employees are saying before you make any decisions?
3. Poor Career Health Manifests in Mind and Body
We’ve all heard the phrase “mental health day” and many of us have even taken a few, but the fact is ─ a job can truly affect our mental and physical being. About nine in ten (87%) workers say they’ve been dissatisfied with a job and, of those, three out of four (76%) report the dissatisfaction affected other areas of their life. The areas most affected include:
- Physical and/or emotional symptoms (e.g. anxiety, insomnia, depression, high blood pressure, ulcer) (49%)
- Less time to enjoy things important to me outside of work (49%)
- Less excitement about things I typically enjoy (31%)
- Relationship with spouse or significant other (29%)
- Relationships with friends/family (27%)
Our advice is take the time to make sure a job is the right fit — personally and professionally. Some tips to accomplish this:
- Ask direct and tough questions like “what do you think are the most unfavorable parts of working here? What would you change if you could?” to try and uncover information about the company and its culture from the people who already work there.
- Talk to friends and acquaintances who’ve been there. If you know people inside, pick their brains about anything and everything that matters to you.
- Trust your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Try to get behind the feelings and understand what isn’t clicking.
- Spend time poking around Glassdoor.com. Even if you know people who work there, chances are you still may not have the whole picture, so check out Glassdoor.com and find out what employees in other roles may be saying, especially since their identities are anonymous.
So whether you are unsure about how you stack up among your peers, feel your work conditions are not what they should be, or are simply finding it hard to have a good work/life balance, we’re here to help keep your work life (and your life outside work) healthy. Your work matters, and it’s way to risky to keep guessing when there are employees on the inside that are telling you what to expect.