Job Satisfaction, Work Attitude

As stated by Black (2001), teachers’ stress is rising due to such factors as greater time constraints, low salaries, excessive work overloads, lack of involvement in decision – making and problems with school disciplines. Teachers suffer, due to in part of to the low-pay-high-cost-of-living gap. Decisions handed from the top down leave teachers feeling like more trainers than educators. Teaching in low performing schools should be a rewarding experience, yet these schools are labelled failures. These are confounded as some educators are seen publicly lambasting others.

The education community is on edge. With all the finger pointing and name calling, it is a wonder teacher can push this negativism out of their minds while they turn their full attention on their students (Nichols, 2006). Furthermore, a nationwide survey conducted by the Rural Editorial Service of the University of Chicago reported in July 2006 that job satisfaction depends also such factors as the community’s attitude toward them and the schools, the quality of educational leadership, the amount of responsibility granted to teachers, adequate housing facilities, teacher welfare benefits, and others.

In point of fact, there were signal improvements in teachers’ conditions of service throughout the year. New or liberalized retirement plans were authorized by well over half the states, and class registrations were reduced to thirty in Maryland and Arkansas. In the Philippines, one of the major problems in the Department of Education is the shortage of trained and competent teachers. Major reason of this shortfall is that a number of trained teachers turn to other types of employment and some went abroad for greater employment opportunity.

Generally, as observed that some teachers are disillusioned, demoralized and confused at being forced to carry out unpopular Government policies, while being constantly blamed for the society’s ills. Some factors might have created dissatisfaction amongst teachers will probably include references to discipline problems created by unruly pupils, class sizes, the introduction of the National Curriculum, and lowered professional status.

Additional factors also include level of salaries and benefits, increased work-related pressures, like having too many forms to be filled up, the here and now changes of different proposed programs of the department, the concern over employment security like the most recently problem on the Government Security Insurance System (GSIS) and lessening support for education on the part of political opportunities. As someone who has spent many years working as a schoolteacher at the same time a School In – charge in one of the schools in Davao City, and had continually work closely with teachers especially in the schools in the interland. I have observe that some teachers are somewhat fed up with having to teach children in even larger classes, working in schools which are dilapidated, underfunded and overstretched. Taking in to account that most of these teachers are working away from their home and family and could only go home weekly, or the least once a month due to the distance of the schools they are assigned. However, districts located in the hinterland such as Paquibato, had most number of teacher applicants every year.

Reason of this scenario could be the fact that many teachers are applying for transfer to the nearby schools after a one or two years of service and that applicant could be hired easily. Nevertheless, some teachers had tenured in this district up to their retirement period and some had flourished and raised their professional status and positions. The ground for conducting this study is that it is intended to shed light on what influences how teachers feel about their work and profession so that positive job-related attitudes may be cultivated. Theoretical Background

The Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory, a motivation theory, laid the foundation for job satisfaction theory. It is founded in the premise that goals or needs underpin by being the fundamental source of all desires. This theory explains that people seek to satisfy five specific needs in life – physiological needs, safety needs, social needs, self-esteem needs, and self-actualization. In the levels of the five basic needs, the person does not feel the second need until the demands of the first have been satisfied, nor the third until the second has been satisfied, and so on (Evan,2010).

According to Hackman & Oldham (2007), Frederick Herzberg’s Two factor theory (also known as Motivator Hygiene Theory) attempts to explain satisfaction and motivation in the workplace. This theory states that satisfaction and dissatisfaction are driven by different factors – motivation and hygiene factors, respectively. An employee’s motivation to work is continually related to job satisfaction of a subordinate. Motivation can be seen as an inner force that drives individuals to attain personal and organizational goals.

Motivating factors are those aspects of the job that make people want to perform, and provide people with satisfaction, for example achievement in work, recognition, promotion opportunities. These motivating factors are considered to be intrinsic to the job, or the work carried out. Hygiene factors include aspects of the working environment such as pay, company policies, supervisory practices, and other working conditions.

However, Path-Goal Theory contends that the leader must motivate subordinates by: (1) emphasizing the relationship between the subordinates’ own needs and the organizational goals; (2) clarifying and facilitating the path subordinates must take to fulfill their own needs as well as the organization’s needs (google. com,2010) Another well-known job satisfaction theory is the Dispositional Theory (Jackson April 2007). Accordingly, it is a very general theory that suggests that people have innate dispositions that cause them to have tendencies toward a certain level of satisfaction, regardless of one’s job.

This approach became a notable explanation of job satisfaction in light of evidence that job satisfaction tends to be stable over time and across careers and jobs. Moreover, a significant model that narrowed the scope of the Dispositional Theory was the Core Self-evaluations Model, proposed by Timothy A. Judge in 1998. Judge argued that there are four Core Self-evaluations that determine one’s disposition towards job satisfaction: self-esteem, general self-efficacy, locus of control, and neuroticism.

This model states that higher levels of self-esteem (the value one places on his/her self) and general self-efficacy (the belief in one’s own competence) lead to higher work satisfaction. Having an internal locus of control (believing one has control over herhis own life, as opposed to outside forces having control) leads to higher job satisfaction. Finally, lower levels of neuroticism lead to higher job satisfaction (Wikipedia,2010). Evans (2001), gives eight stages progression for a teacher moving from a modest level of job satisfaction towards a higher level of job satisfaction towards which is helpful.

These are the following: first is being aware that there is a problem. Being aware that there is an issue, and agreeing what issue is, is by far the most important aspect of seeking to change a situation. Then devising a strategy. Once they know what the issue is that they are addressing they can start work on devising a strategy to solve it. It is followed by effecting the new strategy. It means that once they have decided what to do, they have to start work on implementing this strategy. Fourth stage is awareness of having made changes work. This implies that there is excellent communication in school.

Next stage is perception that this is all worthwhile. By this stage everyone needs to start feeling better about the work being undertaken. Then sixth stage is each teacher needs to feel good about his or her own contribution to the scheme of change. In this way, teachers become not only positive about the change programme, but they also see their contribution as being significant. Seventh is a sense of achievement. This comes from the feeling of a job well done. Lastly is job fulfilment and job comfort. By this stage teachers feel good about themselves and about the job and most important about their ability to affect their meaningful way.

However, according to Weis, (2010) job satisfaction can also be seen within the broader context of the range of issues which affect an individual’s experience of work, or their quality of working life. Job satisfaction can be understood in terms of its relationships with other key factors, such as general well-being, stress at work, control at work, home-work interface, and working conditions. Stress as defined by Hans Selye, is the non-specific response of the body to any demand made upon it. It is not nervous tension, but the wear and tear of life.

Stress describes the effects of the body’s reaction to pressure. The source of stress, called stressor, may be purely physical, social, or psychological. The mind may interpret it as pleasant or unpleasant. Whatever meaning it gives, the mind sends it via two pathways. One pathway, is known as the subconscious appraisal pathway, is responsible for the physical and emotional reflexes of the body. The other pathway, responsible for voluntary actions, is used for perception, evaluation, and decision – making. In this other pathway, the individual is made aware of the environmental demands.

As he perceives his situation, he interprets it according to his previous experiences, value system, self-concept, ego-strengths, attitudes and feelings. Emotions are usually aroused which in turn give color to the person’s interpretation (Fabella, 2008). According to Good Health Handbook, life and stress are interwoven with each other. It depends on how you view life and how stress affects you. Stress is a highly individual phenomenon. It is strange in its own way – because when it occurs it becomes difficult for the body and mind to adjust to the pattern of life.

However, Fabella stated in his book, that stress can be minimized and channelled for growth and development, and life can be filled with joy, peace, love and security. He added accordingly, that stress- resilient people have been observed to have a specific set of attitudes toward life- an openness to change, a feeling of involvement in whatever they are doing, and a sense of control over events. He further said that man who places his entire self in the sphere of work neglecting love (family) and play (sports, hobbies, socializing, friendships) decreases his overall adaptability.

If he defines his existence in terms of achievement in his work, he will find that if for external reasons (i,e. , poor health) or boredom ( loss of interest or loss of faith in his employer) his work loses meaning, then so will his life. He will become demoralized, confused, and unable to function. Mayo Clinic stated that there is a link between work approach and job satisfaction. Work is often approached from three perspectives. Usually all three perspectives are important for job satisfaction, but one is often the priority: First is, It’s a job.

If you approach work as a job, you focus primarily on the financial rewards. In fact, the nature of the work may hold little interest for you. What’s important is the money. If a job with more pay comes your way, you’ll likely move on. Next is, It’s a career. If you approach work as a career, you’re interested in advancement. You want to climb the career ladder as far as possible or be among the most highly regarded professionals in your field. You’re motivated by the status, prestige and power that come with the job. The third is, It’s a calling.

If you approach your job as a calling, you focus on the work itself. You work less for the financial gain or career advancement than for the fulfillment the work brings. One approach isn’t necessarily better than the others. But it is helpful to reflect on why work if unsatisfied with the job and are ready to move on. Think about what originally drew on the current job, and whether it may be a factor in lack of job satisfaction. Additionally, the Clinic noted several ways to increase job satisfaction depending on the underlying cause of the lack of job satisfaction. One is by Improving job skills.

Keeping abreast to the new strategies and techniques, and by attending seminars. Developing a new project also helps. Working on something one care about can boost confidence. Mentoring a co-worker. Once a job is mastered, it is a becoming routine. Helping a new co-worker or an intern advance his or her skills can restore the challenge and the satisfaction you desire. However, when personal abilities do not match the responsibilities, boredom will attack. Keep in mind that boredom can literally be deadly if a job involves working with machinery or caring for people, much more on dealing with children.

If the mind is wandering to the point that a life or the lives of others is put in jeopardy, take action now. Stay positive. Use positive thinking to reframe thoughts about the job. Changing one’s attitude about work will not necessarily happen overnight or increase job satisfaction overnight. Stop negative thoughts. Put things in perspective. Look for the silver lining. “Reframing” can help find the good in a bad situation. Learn from mistakes. Failure is one of the greatest learning tools, but many people let failure defeat them. Be grateful. Gratitude can help focus on what’s positive about the job.

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