Well-being at work is a topic that has increasingly received attention, especially in post-materialistic societies. Since basic needs are largely fulfilled for most people in these societies, the hedonic treadmill has been turned on and expectations have risen. As a consequence, employees are increasingly asking for meaning and purpose at work. Extrinsic motivation alone is no longer sufficient for a growing number of employees. Intrinsic rewards and good working conditions are required, in a sort of upward movement on Maslow’s pyramid (a sociological theory establishing a hierarchy of needs from basic physiological requirements to higher ones, such as sense of self-realisation). As a consequence, companies have to be able to provide conditions for self-growth to be able to keep the best employees, as this will become a basic requirement along with a decent salary or health insurance.
Originally published on www.oecdinsights.org on 11 February 2015.