Every professional has struggled being fulfilled in his or her profession at one point or another. A recent report by The Conference Board showed that 53% of Americans are unhappy in their work and a Gallup report showed 71% of millennials are not engaged (or actively disengaged) at work. The frequency at which people checking Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or just wasting time during working hours makes me believe these numbers are low.
Even so, these fulfillment numbers are important because the average person spends over 92,000 hours working in his or her lifetime, the equivalent of 35% of their waking hours. What professionals get while working those hours goes a long way towards being happy, engaged, and ultimately fulfilled.
We’ve discovered a formula for professional fulfillment that we call the PEG factor.
Providing + Experiences + Growth = Fulfillment at work.
The P in the PEG factor stands for Providing. Statistics show that providing financially for yourself and/or your family is a the most important necessity in order for a professional to be fulfilled by their job. Each individual’s financial threshold is different based on personal expectations, but a Princeton study found that once an individual is making $75,000 the majority of their happiness that is derived from money (the ability to provide) is fulfilled. Providing to your expectations and standard of living is the second necessity in being fulfilled with our work.
The E stands for Experiences. The second necessity in being fulfilled with our work is having positive experiences. These experiences can come in a lot of different forms; completing a difficult project, traveling to industry conferences, giving a group presentation, or hiring an employee. Each organization, job role and or industry can provide different experiences but the key is they are positive and present on an ongoing basis.
The G stands for Growth. William Butler Yeats said it best, “we are happy when we are growing”. When employees are acquiring new skills, given challenging work, and adding value that they can realize — they are growing. There is a simple test every professional can do to be sure they are growing. Ask yourself, “Am I growing in my job?” and answer it in less than 5 seconds with a yes or no. If it takes you longer than 5 seconds or you are unsure then the answer is clear.
All of these necessities of our professional fulfillment are measured with our personal expectations.
If any of them aren’t equal to your expectation, there’s a high likelihood that you will become one of the 2/3rds of professionals that are anticipated to switch jobs in the next 5 years in search of fulfillment.
So remember, If you are providing, having positive experiences, and growing professionally to your expectations, you will be fulfilled in your work. So, Providing + Experiences + Growth = Fulfillment.
Getting Leadership Ready moving into a leadership role within an organization typically provides the opportunity to increase each element of the PEG Factor. You can learn more about standing out as a potential leader from our Getting Leadership Ready Program HERE.