I saw this stated in an article and it got me to thinking. Do I really want happy employees? Or do I want satisfied employees? Or do I want motivated employees? It all depends I guess on how you define those terms. The article talked about happy employees being well paid, but not paid too much. One could argue that a happy employee would be one who is paid to do whatever they wanted to do. Pay me to surf the Internet all day and I will be happy. But that doesn't do much for the company and soon everyone will be unhappy. No company, no paycheck.
The same thing could be said about the definition of safisfaction. Some may be satisfied to do as little as possible and still get paid for it.
No, I think I want motivated employees. But that needs definition too. I want employees motivated to produce high quality work and contribute to the success of the organization. I motivate them through the use of rewards of compensation, learning, challenge, structure, affiliation, involvement and achievement. If this makes them happy and satisfied all the much better. But I am not willing to just settle for happy or satisfied.
What about you?