Australian’s ‘thriving’ in life but stressed at work

Australians and New Zealanders have reported “thriving” in life despite many being stressed at work and actively looking for a new job.

That’s the message from the Gallup State of the Global Workplace: 2024 Report, which showed Australia and New Zealand ranked 10th on the list of countries with the highest proportion of people who say they are thriving.

Globally, 34 per cent of people said they were thriving in life, yet 60 per cent of Aussies and Kiwis said the same.

Despite the high number of people reporting happiness in life overall, Australia and New Zealand still fell well short of the country with the most residents thriving, which is Finland at 83 per cent.

The report also showed that when you zero in on workplace specific metrics, almost half of Aussie and Kiwi employees (48 per cent), reported feeling stressed a lot on the previous workday.

In addition to stressed, 19 per cent said they felt sad, while 15 per cent said they felt angry the day prior.

Source: State of the Global Workplace: 2024 Report.

Globally, 41 per cent of workers reported being stressed.

“Australian workplaces are facing a retention, productivity and mental health crisis,” Gallup APAC Managing Director Claire de Carteret said.

“According to an Australian Workers union (AWU) study, one in every two employees experienced bullying, harassment or discrimination in 2023.

“The result is a sharp increase in psychosocial injury claims.”

State of the Global Workplace: 2024 Report

The report also showed that, in addition, to experiencing a lot of stress, 25 per cent of employees are engaged at work, 64 per cent are not engaged and 11 per cent are actively disengaged.

Ms de Carteret said this lack of engagement could cost Australian companies more than $220 billion annually in lost opportunity, which equates to about 9 per cent of the national GDP.

State of the Global Workplace: 2024 Report

The report also discovered that 43 per cent of Aussie workers are watching for or actively seeking a new job, while 74 per cent believe now is a good time to find a job. 

However, Australia and New Zealand do fare better than the Global figures, with 52 per cent of workers worldwide watching for or actively seeking a new job. 

State of the Global Workplace: 2024 Report

“Almost half of employees intend to leave and are actively looking for new roles,” Ms de Carteret said.

“Organisational leaders urgently need to address this crisis by taking actions that foster a workplace culture of employee engagement and wellbeing.”

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Kylie Dulhunty

Kylie Dulhunty is the Editor at Elite Agent.