Another Knowledge Café — a meeting where the Business school professors exchange teaching experience and methods — was held at the Graduate School of Management of Saint Petersburg University.
The main topic for discussion at the meeting of May 20, 2022 was professor well-being. Sofya Kosheleva, professor at the Department of Organizational Behavior and Personnel Management at GSOM SPbU, talked on the latest conceptions of well-being, structure and content of its components, their relation to professional activity and professor satisfaction. A particular focus was given to professional well-being indicators, current issues and ways to solve them.
The presentation had been prepared based on the comparative study of publications and research results regarding the problems of labor organization and professor well-being assessment at Russian higher education institutions.
Well-being is an integral marker of positive personality performance in the professional sphere and comprises emotional, cognitive and behavioral components that characterize one's attitude to oneself as a professional, professional environment and organizational context.
Although people perceive their well-being subjectively, they usually do it based on objective conditions of their professional activity. It has been revealed that well-being level is related to age, status and partly to sex, emotional state, loyalty to the university, financial support and overall life quality.
Research has shown that the main values of university professors are professional mission, respect of their colleagues and students as well as freedom and creativity in decision-making. It is remarkable that while the financial aspect goes in last place, it is at the same time one of the main reasons for dissatisfaction causing professors to leave the university. The majority of respondents also reported that pleasure from the teaching process, research and communication with interesting people is what attracts them most in their profession.
Professors are concerned about the fact that the innovation aspect of the educational process lately has become not only more consuming in terms of time, professional and social workloads, but also more personally challenging — requiring high intellectual and emotional commitment. They note that innovation activity should not be an excessive duty but become a sphere of professors' self-fulfillment and help unlock their resources.
Researchers point out six components that would help create positive working environment for the support of faculty professional well-being:
- controllable workloads;
- personal control over activities;
- support from colleagues and supervisors;
- positive relationships at work;
- clear professional role;
- sense of control over changes in the organization.