Thoughts on Kingdom, Church, and Grace from an American living in Hong Kong

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Forbes Magazine names "10 Happiest Jobs" and "10 Most Hated Jobs"

"Mirror, Mirror on the wall, who are the happiest workers of all?"

 Seems according to Forbes magazine, men of the cloth appear to have the most job satisfaction.  I have to admit it, I was a bit surprised as "clergy" would not have been my # 1 guess.  According to the article the Top 10 happiest jobs are: (courtesy of Forbes Magazine)

1. Clergy: The least worldly are reported to be the happiest of all

2. Firefighters: Eighty percent of firefighters are “very satisfied” with their jobs, which involve helping people.

3. Physical therapists: Social interaction and helping people apparently make this job one of the happiest.

4. Authors: For most authors, the pay is ridiculously low or non-existent, but the autonomy of writing down the contents of your own mind apparently leads to happiness.

5. Special education teachers: If you don’t care about money, a job as special education teacher might be a happy profession. The annual salary averages just under $50,000.

6. Teachers: Teachers in general report being happy with their jobs, despite the current issues with education funding and classroom conditions. The profession continues to attract young idealists, although fifty percent of new teachers are gone within five years.

7. Artists: Sculptors and painters report high job satisfaction, despite the great difficulty in making a living from it.

8. Psychologists: Psychologists may or may not be able to solve other people’s problems, but it seems that they have managed to solve their own.

9. Financial services sales agents: Sixty-five percent of financial services sales agents are reported to be happy with their jobs. That could be because some of them are clearing more than $90,000 dollars a year on average for a 40-hour work week in a comfortable office environment.

10. Operating engineers: Playing with giant toys like bulldozers, front-end loaders, backhoes, scrapers, motor graders, shovels, derricks, large pumps, and air compressors can be fun. With more jobs for operating engineers than qualified applicants, operating engineers report being happy.
And since I'm kinda-clergy, kinda an author, and kinda a teacher, that would explain why I'm "kinda happy."

But now (boo-hiss) the 10 Most Hated Jobs (again courtesy of Forbes magazine)

1. Director of Information Technology: Information technology directors hold almost as much sway over the fate of some companies as a chief executive, but they reported the highest level of dissatisfaction with their jobs. Why? “Nepotism, cronyism, disrespect for workers.”

2. Director of Sales and Marketing: A director of sales and marketing plans reported the second-highest level of job dissatisfaction, “a lack of direction from upper management and an absence of room for growth”.

3. Product Manager: Product managers complained of restricted career growth, and boring clerical work even at this level.

4. Senior Web Developer: Senior web developers reported a high degree of unhappiness in their jobs, because employers are unable to communicate coherently, and lack an understanding of the technology.

5. Technical Specialist: A technical specialist reported that for all their expertise, they were treated with a palpable disrespect. Their input was not taken seriously by senior management.

6. Electronics Technician: Electronics technicians complain of having too little control, work schedule, lack of accomplishment, no real opportunity for growth, no motivation to work hard, no say in how things are done, and mutual hostility among peers.

7. Law Clerk: Clerkships are among the most highly sought-after positions in the legal profession and the job beefs up a resume. Yet law clerks still report high levels of dissatisfaction. The hours are long and grueling, and the clerk is subject to the whims of sometimes mercurial personalities.

8. Technical Support Analyst: Technical support analysts help people with their computer issues. This typically amounts to calmly communicating technical advice to panicked individuals, often over the phone, and then going on site only to find the client simply hadn’t turned the printer on. They may be required to travel at a moment’s notice, sometimes on holidays or weekends.

9. CNC Machinist: CNC machinists operate computer numerical control machines. For the uninitiated, this is a machine that operates a lathe or a mill. Now that the CNC operator has had most of the physical hazards of manufacturing replaced by a machine, there’s not a lot to do but push buttons and maintenance. Since it’s a specialized skill, the job offers no room for advancement.

10. Marketing Manager: Marketing managers often cited a lack of direction as the primary reason for job dissatisfaction.
The article goes on to say that, "What’s striking about the list is that these relatively high level people are imprisoned in hierarchical bureaucracies. They see little point in what they are doing. The organizations they work for don’t know where they are going, and as a result, neither do these people."

It's true, what kid ever looks at that list and says, "When I grow up I want to be one of those."

So its never to late to jump ship and do what makes you happy...


Bob said...

Ha -- if only it were that easy.

Not really surprised that clergy report high job satisfaction. Could it be that are doing what they are CALLED to do?

I was a law clerk straight out of law school, for about 16 months. Loved it. A lot more than being a lawyer.

I know a couple of guys who have become career law clerks. The federal positions pay well, have good benefits, retirement, etc. and relatively little pressure. Why not?

The ones who are dissatisfied are probably the hotshots who, when they were in law school, thought they would conquer the world and now can't find jobs.

Can you tell this hit a nerve with me??????

Steve H. said...

Yeah, a little bit. You know I almost made a mid career change into law. Took a couple law classes in grad school 2002-2003 and got hooked. Applied to law school for 2004 and got accepted into a couple schools (not great ones) but decided to run for congress instead.

Paul Ellis said...

I'm surprised dentists aren't in the hated list - their customers are scared of them and can't wait to leave, and they (the dentists) have high suicide rates.

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