Over the last few months we have been carrying out an experiment on our Make my Work Better site. We have been collecting statistics on the number of people on Twitter that tweet “I hate my work” or some variant of it and I wanted to share some of the outcomes of that.
Firstly it is worth pointing out that this isn’t greatly scientific. It only looked at English responses worldwide so is skewed but still covers over 40,000 tweets in a six month period. Even in its raw state it does show us some interesting things.
If you are wondering why we didn’t also look at people that tweeted “I love my job” and variants that is because it would have been impossible for us to determine whether the individual was being sarcastic or not. A quick visual check suggested many were so we concentrated on the negative.
I don’t like Mondays
Let’s get this out of the way. Nobody likes Monday’s and unsurprisingly the data confirms this.
What we found to be really interesting, however, was that the rest of the week was pretty even. We had expected there to be a peak on Sunday with people suddenly realising that they were due back at work in the morning but the data didn’t bear this out. Perhaps this is a reflection of the modern working patterns with more people no longer simply working Monday to Friday.
The U.S. Tops the charts for unhappiness at work
As the tweet collection was only in English we only expected to get responses captured from English speaking countries. Given its population and relatively high use of social media it is no great surprise that the United States topped the list.
In order to make this list relevant we have looked at the number of tweets compared to the number of English speakers in each country. So, for example, despite having a population of 76 million English speakers the Philippines is relatively happy for it’s size. Ireland on the other hand with a population of about 4 million fares less well.
The English speaking population numbers were taken from here.
Texas is an unhappy place to be
Looking only at the U.S. States you really don’t want to be working in Texas which had the highest tweets per head of population of any US state.
A number of other states didn’t have enough responses to be statistically significant and so are shown here in white. So if you are looking for a happy state to work in look towards those shown in light blue and particularly the cluster in the south east of South Carolina, Tennessee and Arizona.
And here’s a breakdown of the unhappiness by Texan city.
Other notable unhappy places
Locations on the tweets are user entered and don’t have to reflect reality. This leads to a list of other notable places where people weren’t enjoying their work which included Wonderland (37 tweets), Neverland (22), Hell (21), Mars (19) and, surprisingly, Hogwarts (17) – perhaps it’s Professor Snape bringing everyone down!
The most startling thing about these results is the sheer volume of people that were willing to declare their dislike of their jobs on such a public forum and that hasn’t worked out well in the past.
We’ll continue to run the stats collection and intend to look again once we have a years results when we will have a much larger sample size.