Exploring differences in well-being across occupation type and skill

TitreExploring differences in well-being across occupation type and skill
Type de publicationJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuteursHofmann, J, Gander, F, Ruch, W
JournalTranslational Issues in Psychological Science
Mots-clésengagement, life satisfaction, meaning, occupation, orientations to happiness

This study examines three orientations to happiness (OTH) – pleasure, engagement, and
meaning—and their associations to life satisfaction across different occupations and skill
levels associated with certain occupations in a representative sample of the Swiss workforce (N 1140). Utilizing a broad classification of occupational groups, mean level differences in the OTH within and across occupational groups and skill levels were investigated. Results showed that people in higher skill occupations report a higher life satisfaction and a lower orientation to pleasure than those in lower skill occupations. Also, the orientation to meaning was more closely related to life satisfaction in higher skill than in lower skill occupations. With regard to occupational groups, we found a higher life satisfaction in managers and professionals, and further differences among other occupational groups (e.g., higher levels of pleasure in service and sales workers; or higher levels of engagement in craft and related trade workers). Overall, the effects across occupations were relatively small—which is largely consistent with previous findings in Swiss samples. Nonetheless, the differences across skill levels and occupational groups in the OTH could provide additional information in occupational counseling settings. Also, the current study covered all types of jobs (vs. investigating selected occupation groups), thus allowing first insights into the generalizability of results across studies (and cultures).