Indians are happy at workplace, but constantly on the lookout

This was the headlines of an article I read in this morning’s Economic times. The article spoke about a study that found that the level of job satisfaction in India is extremely high at around 88%, as against the global average of around 56 %.

It also said that 71% of the Indian workforce is either thinking about or actively looking for new positions.

I run a business helping Organisations build retention strategies and I can tell you with a lot of confidence ( and supporting data) that close to 65% of employees leave organisations due to ‘controllable factors’


Employees who generally enjoy their work, don’t look out.


So I am wondering that either the data presented is incorrect or there is something terribly wrong with the rest of the world. Personally speaking I would like to believe that the study is accurate.

So then what could it be? Why are employees in India happy?

Employees in India are extremely tolerant.

We don’t question if something is not right and in several organisations the culture itself doesn’t exist. We tend to take it in our stride and convince ourselves that it could be a lot worse in other companies.

The infamous ‘chalta hai attitude

The appraisal process is terrible, the R&R program is biased, Manager communication is poor. Chalta hai. Its all ok.

Indian employees have lower expectations

Both employees and employers have low expectations from each other. This also means the employees are not hungry for growth , do not take up challenges and hence tend to be stagnated. They are in a happy state but does it really help the Organisations cause?

We are not honest in surveys

Fear of retribution, lack of trust and a general apathy towards the Organization translates to an ‘I don’t really care’ attitude while participating in surveys. The scores look good but the truth is very different.

Incidentally the same survey rated Japan very low with only 44% of Japanese employees claiming to be happy at work. Interesting right, especially since the competitiveness and commitment of the Japs is legendary.

The question is do we want our employees to be happy or do we want them to be engaged? Is happiness the right measure?

Curious to know what you think. Please leave your views. Make me happy 🙂

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