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How much is job happiness worth?

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in Leaders & Managers,Management Training

How much is your happiness worth? Using life-satisfaction surveys that measure five key factors, economists John Helliwell and Haifang Huang at the University of British Columbia have figured it out.

When it comes to choosing between a job you like and a better-paying one that you may like less, use this measuring strategy:

1. Do you trust management? You may as well add a 36% pay raise to your current salary, say Helliwell and Huang. A higher trust level will boost your overall satisfaction in life by about the same amount as a 36% raise.

2. Have you recently lost trust in management? Conversely, the decline in job satisfaction is like taking a 36% pay cut.

3. Do you spend your day on a variety of projects? That equals a 21% pay hike, Helliwell and Huang found.

4. Does your job demand a high-skill level? That equates to a 19% raise.

5. Do you have enough time to finish your work? Tack on an 11% pay boost.

When it comes to measuring how income affects satisfaction, however, a 10% raise will likely only boost your overall contentment with life by one point on a 10-point scale. Not much by comparison.

Bottom line: You might as well do something you like, because the money alone won’t make you happy.

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