What employees aspire for at the workplace

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What employees aspire for at the workplace is a question that matters more and more everyday for the success as well as the survival of the organizations.

We all have our needs and wants for which we engage in different activities and carry out a certain lifestyle. 

From a career perspective, these needs and desires begin with physiological needs such as safety, pay, and other benefits. If these basic needs are fulfilled by the majority of the organizations, then in order to provide a competitive edge in current times it’s crucial for management and talent acquisition teams focus on what else they can offer to their employees. 

Research by Harvard Business Review found that what employees aspire for at the workplace are three big components known as a career, cause, and community.

  1. Career: 

Career is about the kind of work and role opportunities the employee will receive in an organization. Organizations that provide some level of autonomy as well as scope for upward growth to employees are  the top priority for employees. 

An 2013 study of Economic times showed that organizations such as Google and Wipro are prime examples of how they help employees to grow their careers by providing them enough internal opportunities of training and career growth. 

Building these attributes also helps to build intrinsic motivation for the employees,  furthermore increasing their morale and satisfaction.

  1. Cause: 

The cause refers to the degree to which employees can relate to the purpose of the organization and its impact on society and the world. 

Building cause can be a little tricky as different people have different value systems, but focusing on a larger context of communicating how the organization aims to do good in the world is a good starting point.

Organizations that  are able to communicate their cause through both their mission statements and their work often find themselves being viewed favourably by  current and potential employees. A good example of such organizations could be UN bodies such as UNICEF and UNESCO. UNICEF not only gives their employees a larger cause to work for, but also makes sure that the employees’ work gets recognized and they know that how their work is creating an impact.

  1. Community:

Community refers to the degree to which employees feel respected, cared for, and appreciated by others in their workplace. The organizations which show these traits naturally have lower turnover rates of employees, since the employees’  need for belonging is fulfilled in such spaces.

To learn more about reducing turnover rates, click here.

The need for belonging is an intrinsic need of a person to be part of a group that is bigger than the person themselves.

  • These three factors collectively can help to build a psychological contract between employees and the organization or management. This means that if these three factors are satisfied they will put more effort into their work. If these are not satisfied or there appears to be a breach of this psychological contract, then the employee would lose morale and even consider leaving the organization. To learn how to boost employee morale, click here.

  • Research has also found that these three factors are crucial for all age groups as well as all major departments of an organization all around the globe.

Today the market and organizations are driven by their employees, and this is why organizations need to learn what employees seek in an organization. While an organization can’t just become an ideal organization overnight, focussing on the needs of the employees does create a huge difference. Therefore, it doesn’t matter if you are managing a large corporation with thousands of employees or a small business with just a few, the important thing is how much effort you can put into creating a better workplace.


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