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A satisfying job

Sathya Mithra Ashok, Senior Editor, CNME

Sometime in July-August of last year, CareerBliss, an online resource that measures job satisfaction on multiple factors brought out a list labelled the ten most hated jobs of the year.

The list was created based on a survey conducted among hundreds of thousands of employees in 2011, where satisfaction was rated on a scale from one to ten, and included elements such as workplace culture, co-workers, and the boss. Most job dissatisfaction, CareerBliss found, was associated with limited growth opportunity and lack of rewards.

An astounding five of the total 10 of the most hated jobs in that list are related to IT and technical careers. This includes technical support analysts (who help people with computer issues, including communicating advice over the phone) at number eight, electronics technicians (who maintain, troubleshoot and collect monthly measurement data for electronic systems) at number six, technical specialists ( who lead the analysis, definition, design, construction, testing, installation, and modification of medium to large infrastructure) at number five, and senior web developers (who design, maintain, and develop applications for the Internet) at number four.

Reasons for the high misery among these jobs ranged from inflexible work schedule, lack of accomplishment, lack of growth opportunities, low motivation, perceived lack of control over tasks, hostility from peers to inadequate communication from the upper management and the feeling that their inputs were not taken seriously.

And guess the topper?

Director of information technology was named as the most hated job of the year by the survey. Despite the high pay, and despite holding almost as much sway as the CEO in larger, more established enterprises, IT directors remained an unhappy lot due to the long hours, the unrelenting pressure, and disrespect from workers.

Surprising, and scary. Remember though, that this mood of unhappiness is restricted to more mature markets, where IT is considered an integral part of the business without the whisper of a doubt.

In the Middle East, there is yet a feeling of well-being surrounding senior IT heads, especially as they see in front of them a growth chart that points in the direction of the boardroom, parallel powers with the CFO and CEO, and increased understanding of the relevance of technology to organisations.

This high satisfaction level is also shown in constantly innovative projects in companies across sectors in the region. Many of these projects, and the people behind them, will be highlighted and honoured in CNME’s CIO 50 Forum and Awards event. The event, which will be conducted in the last week of January , will see 50 prominent CIOs from the region being rewarded for their efforts in adding to the bottomline of their organisations. (Details on the event, the nomination procedure, and the agenda can be found on www.cio50me.com).

Even as we celebrate the success of regional CIOs, one can’t help but wonder if unhappiness is an inevitable result of increasing maturity among enterprises and the regional market. Or is there a way to handle the stress and duress that comes with a higher management job?

And what would CIOs like to see from vendors and solutions in 2012 and beyond to make their jobs easier?

I promise to ask the questions at the CIO 50 Awards and Forum. If you wish to know the answer, don’t forget to register and attend the event. (You can register at www.cio50me.com).

See you there.

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