So there was a report recently released that says that Singaporean workers are the unhappiest compared to Hong Kong five other countries in South East Asia. This was based on a survey of 67,764 respondents conducted by JobStreet. The five other countries surveyed were Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
You can be sure that this kind of news will attract shit loads of online comments.
Indeed, there are people who are saying that it’s the government’s fault for creating conditions that led to workers being unhappy. What a stupid thing to say!
There are numerous reasons why Singaporeans appear to be unhappier than workers other places. It could really be that the working conditions in Singapore are really bad. And yes. There are much headwinds in the economy that might cause Singaporeans to be less optimistic about their job prospects.
But it could also well be that Singapore is already in a far better position than the other countries in the survey. That’s why Singaporean workers have far higher (perhaps unrealistic) expectations of jobs. And when expectations are higher, it’s not unreasonable that there is a higher chance of disappointment, leading to unhappiness.
And all these are the fault of the government?
If people think Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Philipines are such wonderful places to work in, and that they would be happier working there, perhaps they ought to go work and live in those countries for a while. And I don’t mean go on expat terms. Go to those countries and work and live like the locals. I wonder whether they really will be happier than being in Singapore. I highly doubt they would be.
Another interesting finding of the report is that in Singapore, graduates are the happiest, while the C-suite are the unhappiest. Does that mean that for people to stay happy at work, they shouldn’t aspire to be the C-suite? Surely not right?
That said, the government can indeed play a part. Hopefully the Committee on Future Economy will announce some strategies to boost business confidence and help make Singaporeans more optimistic about job prospects. Beyond that, hopefully as SkillsFuture matures, more Singaporeans can get properly re-skilled, upskilled, second-skilled so that they are in a better position to get meaningful and good quality jobs.
[Featured image: Today file photo]