Australians see success as being happy and healthy rather than rich

Fred Dufour/AFP/Getty Images
  • Australians define success in terms of being happy (77%) and healthy (71%) over earning a six-figure salary (18%).
  • The LinkedIn research shows a majority of Australians (65%) consider themselves to be successful.
  • However, they feel that society’s view has a negative impact on their own potential for success.

Most Australians (61%) believe their education plays a positive role in their ability to achieve success and about a half (49%) feel the same way about the career they’ve chosen.

A LinkedIn survey takes a closer look at what success means to professionals, what motivates them to go to work every day, how they define it, and the diverse factors that have an impact on whether they will achieve success.

And more Australians, in an increasingly fast-paced and competitive work environment, are defining success in terms of being happy (77%) and healthy (71%) over earning a six-figure salary (18%).

The results of the survey fit with with other research showing successful people don’t necessarily consider themselves successful because they’re rich or powerful. Instead, they often talk about relationships, well-being, and societal impact.

The LinkedIn research shows a majority of Australians (65%) consider themselves to be successful. Among 16 countries surveyed by LinkedIn, Australian professionals rank sixth, above both the UK and US, in feeling the most successful.

Other factors, such as age and gender, also come into play when determining confidence in achieving success.

A third (31%) of Australians believe their age has a negative impact on their ability to achieve success, which is significantly higher for Australians aged 55+ (42%) compared to Australians aged 18-24 (24%).

One-fifth of female Australians (23%) feel their gender has a negative impact on their potential for success, compared to only 8% of males.

But a third (32%) of Australians wish society considered “success”, in the traditional sense, to be less important.

Pressure

They feel that society’s view of success has a negative impact on their own potential for future success (27%), reflecting the sense of pressure that Australians feel to live up to expectations.

One-fifth (20%) of Australians think that achieving social success is more important than professional success, slightly lower than the global average of 22%.

Australians would prefer for success to be defined differently for different people (69%) and believe that success comprises of both long-term and short-term everyday wins (50%), rather than achieving status.

“The dynamic nature of Australia’s social and economic environment is reflective of the changing attitudes of Australian’s towards success,” says Shiva Kumar, head of brand and communications for Australia and New Zealand at LinkedIn.

“While success means many different things to different people, it is heartening to see Australian’s are viewing success more holistically and not just in monetary terms.

“We are encouraging professionals to reflect upon what they’re in it for, what truly inspires and keeps them motivated in their professional journey to achieve success.”

LinkedIn surveyed 18,191 adults across 16 countries including 1013 in Australia. The survey was carried out online and the fieldwork was undertaken between October 12 and November 3, 2017.

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