Are you satisfied with the current job?
Firefighters, the clergy1 and others with professional jobs that involve helping2 or serving people are more satisfied with their work and overall are happier than those in other professions, according to results from a national survey.
"The most satisfying jobs are mostly professions, especially those involving caring for, teaching and protecting others and creative pursuits," said Tom Smith, director of the General Social Survey (GSS) at the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago.
In the current study, interviewers asked more than 27,000 people questions about job satisfaction and general happiness. Individuals' level of contentment affects their overall sense of happiness, Smith said.
"Work occupies a large part of each worker's day; is one's main source of social standing3 and helps to define who a person is and affects one's health both physically4 and mentally," Smith states in a published report on the study. "Because of work's central role in many people's lives, satisfaction with one's job is an important component5 in overall well-being6."
Across all occupations, on average 47 percent of those surveyed said they were satisfied with their jobs and 33 percent reported being very happy.
Here are the Top 10 most gratifying jobs and the percentage of subjects who said they were very satisfied with the job:
Physical therapists-78 percent
Special education teachers-70 percent
Education administrators-68 percent
Painters and sculptors-67 percent
Security and financial services salespersons-65 percent
Operating engineers-64 percent
Office supervisors-61 percent
A few common jobs in which about 50 percent of participants reported high satisfaction included: police and detectives, registered nurses, accountants, and editors and reporters.
"The least satisfying dozen jobs are mostly low-skill, manual and service occupations, especially involving customer service and food/beverage preparation and serving," Smith said.