What Is the Most Important Factor to Consider When Looking for Work? Surprising Results from a New Workplace Survey

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Salary continues to be the top priority for the majority of American workers, despite the proverbial “do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life” maxim, according to a recent survey. The depth of shifts in workplace priorities and norms over the past few years was highlighted by a Washington Post-Ipsos survey of 1,148 workers ages 18 to 64. A good boss ranking at No. 2 (ranked as important by 45% of respondents) was far behind pay at No. 1 (ranked as important by 14% of respondents).

Money was still the top consideration when deciding between working from home or spending time in the office; 65% of remote-capable workers said they would accept a higher-paying position even if it required regular time in the office, while only 35% said they would accept a lower-paying position if it would allow them to work from home. However, 55% of survey participants who already work from home said they would accept a job with lower pay if it meant they could keep doing so.

The main justification for staying at home for remote workers? Avoiding the commute (45%), childcare (14%), and being more focused (13%), in that order. Seven out of ten people who work remotely at least once a week claimed that maintaining a work-life balance was made simpler by the hybrid environment.

Nevertheless, tradeoffs exist. Approximately 60% of hybrid and on-site employees and less than 50% of fully remote employees reported having close relationships with coworkers. Working from home has become a hot topic since the pandemic saw a large-scale adoption of remote work; however, businesses, employees, and CEOs seem to be divided on the subject. While some major corporations, like Airbnb, have encouraged employees to work entirely remotely, others, like Tesla, have given employees a deadline if they don’t come back to the office. Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, expressed his vehement opposition to remote work earlier this month, calling it both a productivity and a “moral” issue.

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