Why individuals work (e.g. earning an income, contributing to an individual's self-esteem, material and non-material living standards, happiness) WA Curriculum Economics and Business - Year 7

Why do people work?

Sure - perhaps the biggest reason for working is to earn the money that pays for the goods and services that satisfy our wants.

A wage or salary is the reward for the knowledge, skills, experience and effort that labour contributes to production.

So it makes sense that a reason for working is to gain knowledge, skills and experience that increase a person's potential value to an employer ('working to become')

We can point to many other motivations to work ... activity 1 asks you to make a mind map about those other reasons for working.

A big motivation for work is security about the future - this is also a financial reason. A good example is how people work to rent, or buy, the house in which they live. People in their mid thirties also start to think about working to establish a retirement nest egg.

Some other reasons why people work ... to build knowledge and skills; to be creative; to meet people and make friends; to serve people and society in some way;

We work because ...

A big part of our perceived standard of living is our work status, and the enjoyment we get from work.

Most people spend between 25 and 30 percent of their lives 'at work'. Everyone has slightly different motivations for work, but it makes sense to think about what type of work you might find fulfilling, and might contribute to your happiness (as well as your income)

The 2017 World Happiness Report found that some occupations (professional workers, executives, managers and service workers) are associated with slightly higher happiness scores.

This presentation accompanies the Economics Teachers Association of WA (ETAWA) professional development material written for Western Australian and Australian Curriculum Economics and Business (Year 7).

Created By
Greg Parry
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