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What is the most important to you? A good wage or a good atmosphere at your workplace with nice colleagues?

Of course, a good working atmosphere is the assumption for happiness at work and success of the company. But what is the most important to you? Your wage? Or the atmosphere at work?

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    • Dec 9 2011: Thank you very much for your interesting answer Mohammad! Indeed, the short work time scheme is a nice way of satisfying employees during the difficult and hard times of recession.
  • Nov 23 2011: Certainly the latter. Because I think money is used for associating with nice people.
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    • Dec 9 2011: Thank you for your information Adriaan! Could you please explain me why unions were hardly needed and what you mean by differently organized?
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        • Dec 17 2011: Thank you Adriaan! I do understand it better now and I will certainly read the article, it looks very interesting!
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    Nov 21 2011: I don't care for the wage or the atmosphere; I just want to know I am trying my best to make the best possible impact.
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    Nov 20 2011: Maslow tried to explain it in his theory of Need Hirerarchy ......
    One who does not have job and in need of money definitely will look for wage.
    Once enough wage is ensured definitely it will be atmosphere and peer relation.
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    Nov 20 2011: There are a lot of studies in Industrial Organizational Psychology on how people feel about this. Once people have a sufficient wage to meet their basic needs, a good atmosphere, good people and other less obvious characteristics of environment are more important.

    I am happy to give up a well paying job in order to find work that is truly meaningful to me.
    • Dec 9 2011: Thank you very much Debra! I agree on what you say.
      Working in a good atmosphere and doing something meaningful is indeed very important.
      As we bring more time at the workplace a negative atmosphere can have bad consequences on our mental health. I can imagine myself giving up a well paying job in order to find a meaningful one as well.
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    Nov 20 2011: Pretty easy choice . . . . good atmosphere with nice people. I want that job!
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    Dec 15 2011: I agree, Lynn, but maybe we cannot fully appreciate the "good atmosphere" until we've fully experienced the not-so-nice ones. I like Christopher's response above, to "make the best possible impact," and if wages are enough to meet basic needs (as well as allow for retirement savings), this is ideal.
    Having been in a no-win situation for several years (the office bully continually barking orders at me and others, and a boss who refused to listen to anyone except the "squeaky wheel"), I finally decided, "I matter, too!" Unfortunately (at the time), I was ousted for speaking up the one and only time I chose to do so. The boss literally snapped and said to me, "You can speak, but nothing you say will matter." Well!! Good riddance!
    I am now in a very, very nice place with people who genuinely care for one another, say "I'm sorry" if they've hurt someone's feelings, and where all give an honest effort to work together. No, it is not perfect, but the former boss's inept management skills and lack of caring is what was missing, and I did not realize the degree that place was affecting my health until I was out of there. I think above all else, at least for me, the caring and concern and effort to work together surpass the highest wage. If (due to caring working relationships) I leave at the end of my day with a smile on my face, as opposed to being silenced in the face of continual, allowed harassment, I think I've got it pretty good.
    When I heard the above words from my former boss, I chose not to "fight for" that job...if I was going to be treated that way, it was not worth it.
    • Dec 17 2011: Dear Lalla, thank you for sharing your experiences with us. I think it is terrible what you faced during several years at your previous workplace.

      I am very happy for you that you found such a nice workplace. I agree with you that going home with a big smile on your face at the end of the day is truly important. Indeed, it is not worth fighting for a job when you are treated badly.

      I had also opened up another conversation platform regarding bullying in the workplace a few weeks ago. You can have a look at the conversations there if you like (http://www.ted.com/conversations/7276/what_would_you_do_when_a_colle.html)
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        Dec 17 2011: Thanks, Sabrina. I saw the other conversation the other day, and I read with interest Debra's five points about what a co-worker should do in the face of bullying. While I think all of these are good ideas, in some cases, a person has absolutely no recourse. In some states (in the U.S.) someone can be ousted for no reason; i.e. the boss can fire someone without an exit process. It is called being in an at-will state.
        In my previous situation, the bully left the workplace filthy, such that the next person to use our shared room had to clean it before it was usable for patient care (I am in healthcare, and yes, I am talking about visible blood). After WEEKS of this, I brought it to the boss's attention, who decided to "watch" this person clean the room at the end of the day, and, no surprise, when watched, the room became spotless. The boss dismissed the issue, and I was forced to continue to clean up after this person until I left, several years later. I found blood on our computer monitor the week I left the office. Other co-workers told me over the years how messy this person was, so I know it was not my imagination. We have responsibilities in healthcare, and there is no excuse for this.
        I received multiple notes over the years (from the bully) telling me what to do: how to make chart entries, put this supply here, don't put that there, do this, don't do that, and even once was told not to use a certain cupboard in our room (since, on the days she was there, that worked for her. My response was, "Fine, but what about the days you are not here?" She did not respond).
        There was even stomping down the hall and slamming doors--of course, the boss was gone those days--and the behavior was never "reported" by the manager. At the end, the bully circulated inaccurate and accusatory emails, which brought me forward. This bully is loud and forceful, and the boss did not know how to handle her. I refused to tolerate more. Recourse? Thoughts, anyone?