Survey Results: One in Four Singapore Workers Have an Auspicious Practice at Work, according to a JobsCentral Survey

By Jonathan Tay

Would you don work clothes of a specific colour or avoid going to work on ominous dates, if doing so would improve your fortunes and career success? An online study conducted by the JobsCentral Group in mid-2013 that surveyed 3,568 Singapore workers discovered that more than a quarter of respondents (28 per cent) follow auspicious practices to help boost their success at work.

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What are some auspicious practices observed by workers?

Keeping a religious object or lucky charm in the workplace appears to one of the most common auspicious practices.

• Carrying/ displaying a religious item – 46 per cent
• Keeping a personal charm – 40 per cent

Others include:

• Avoid displaying an item associated with bad luck - 32 per cent
• Carrying out Feng Shui practices at one’s workstation – 29 per cent
• Wearing clothes of a ‘prosperous’ colour to work – 26 per cent
• Sit facing a particular direction – 23 per cent

In addition, the survey discovered some unexpected routines practiced by workers to boost their fortunes at work. Here are some interesting examples:

1. “I never wear blue on Mondays and black on Fridays.”
2. “I avoid wearing red or pink and refrain from eating pau (steamed Chinese bun).”
3. “I would wear clothes with pictures/prints of my auspicious animal.”
4. “I have a ring on my little finger to ward off xiao ren (unpleasant people).”
5. “I painted my car with my auspicious colour.”
6. “I display a ba gua (Feng Shui trigram) mirror at my desk.”
7. “I tape a Chinese coin to my calculator.”
8. “I make it a point to keep all mirrors away from my workstation to prevent work duplication.”
9. “I keep a crystal in my desk drawer for luck.”
10. “I would try not to start work on an inauspicious day of the Lunar Calendar.”
11. “I would not work on the thirteenth of Friday of any month.”
12. “I would apply for leave on inauspicious dates.”
13. “If I’m required to relocate from my work station, I would only do so during a selected auspicious date and time.”
14. “I undertake a pilgrimage once a year in the hopes of improving my work life.”
15. “I stick to a certain pattern of actions which have led to previous career success.”

Who are most likely to have auspicious practices at work?

By Gender: More Male workers (29 per cent) have reported observing auspicious practices at work, compared to Female workers (27 per cent).

By Age: Gen-X workers – aged 30 to 45 (31 per cent) – are the most likely to have an auspicious practice to increase career fortunes, followed by Baby Boomers, aged 46 to 65 (27 percent). On the other hand, Millennials – aged 29 and below (26 per cent) – are least likely to have an auspicious practice at work.

By Job Position: Across different occupation levels, workers who adhere to auspicious practices for career success comprise:

• 33 per cent of Managers and Directors;
• 29 per cent of Professionals and Executives;
• 24 per cent of Associate Professionals and Technicians;
• 28 per cent of Clerical/ Service staff

By Work Industry: The Manufacturing industry has the highest proportion of workers (31 per cent) confessing to having auspicious practices at work, followed by those from the Service (28 per cent) and Construction (27 per cent) industries. Within the Service industry, workers from the following specialisations follow auspicious practices at work:

i. Real Estate Services – 37 per cent
ii. Accommodation & Food Services – 35 per cent
iii. Wholesale & Retail Trade – 32 per cent
iv. Transportation & Storage – 31 per cent
v. Health & Social Services – 29 per cent

How are these propitious practices working out for workers?

The study found that workers who follow auspicious routines may not necessarily achieve better job satisfaction as compared to those who don’t. Workers who reported satisfaction with their jobs make up:

• 56 per cent of those with auspicious practices at work and;
• 54 per cent of those with no auspicious practices at work

Furthermore, there is no significant difference in the satisfaction levels of both groups when considering:

• Work demands – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at an average satisfaction score of 5.9 out of 10, while those without averaged a score of 6.1;
• Advancement opportunities – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 5.2, while those without averaged a score of 5.0;
• Autonomy at work – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 5.7, while those without averaged a score of 5.8;
• Relations with colleagues – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 7.1, while those without averaged a score of 7.2;
• Relations with management – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 6.5, while those without also averaged a score of 6.5;
• Job security – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 6.4, while those without averaged a score of 6.5;
• Salary – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 5.6, while those without averaged a score of 5.5;
• Work-life balance – Workers with auspicious practices rated this attribute at 6.2, while those without averaged a score of 6.1;

Survey Methodology

The online study was conducted among 3,568 Singapore workers aged 16 and over from 22 May to 23 June 2013.

The respondents were employed individuals from both the public and private sectors and include a wide range of occupation levels and work industries.

Using a confidence level of 95% and sample size of 3,568, the results of this survey have a sampling error of +/- 1.64 per cent. This means that the results are statistically significant and that for every 100 times the exact survey is conducted, the results obtained are conformable to a margin of error of +/- 1.64 per cent, 95 per cent of the time.

The JobsCentral Group, a CareerBuilder company, is the owner of JobsCentral.com.sg, one of Singapore's largest job and learning portals. Get a free career personality test and more career- and education-related articles at JobsCentral and JobsCentral Community. Alternatively, Like us on JobsCentral Facebook Page or Follow JobsCentral on Twitter for more career-centric content!

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