Four essentials for a ‘good’ day at work

Over the years we have conducted many surveys of Australian employees, each attracting thousands of responses. This gives us a fascinating insight into the beliefs, trends and thoughts of Australians at work.

More than 3000 Australian and New Zealand employees told us about what is essential at work: to allow them the environment to do their best work.

Do you agree with what people are telling us about the four simple things to ensure you have a ‘good’ day at work? One thing we do know is that for people to be highly productive – that is, to do their best work – they need to be in flow. And often ‘management’ or perceived bureaucracy gets in the way.

What gets in the way of you doing your best work? Here are four of the things people desire most from their workplaces in order to have a ‘good’ day at work:

Desire #1 – more praise

One in five employees does not receive any praise, or at best, it happens once per year. We want our managers to praise us more often, and more specifically. Although some bosses argue that employees only work for the money, it is far more than that. Do you feel more motivated when your efforts are noticed?

Desire #2 ­– better managers

52% of employees say they would leave a role because of their direct manager, and two-thirds are convinced their managers don’t know what motivates them to be more productive. Everyone wants to work with a motivating, supportive manager. Have you ever left a job because of your manager?

Desire #3 – more time with friends and family

Laptops, iPhones, Blackberries – it is too easy to work nowadays. The boundaries blur and employers need to recognise this. Business owners have a responsibility to shore people against burn out, and more time with friends and family plays a vital role in this. Have you ever worked somewhere that was all work and no play?

Desire #4 – greater trust

At RedBalloon, we call it ‘treating people like grown-ups’. Trust should be a given, not something that is earned. You trust that you have been given a role to do your best, and your boss trusts he has chosen the best person for the role. This ought to happen right from the start because it’s empowering starting from a place of trust. What has been your experience of trust at work?

What does it take for you to have a great day at work?

Naomi Simson has received many accolades and awards for the business she founded,, including the 2011 Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur of the Year – Industry.


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