Mar 30, 2016 09:11 AM EDT

Americans Are Most Confident in Their Work, But Are They the Most Productive in the World?


According to a recent study conducted by software-as-a-service firm Qualtrics, American employees were the most likely to rate their personal day-to-day productivity much higher than what they thought of other Americans workers' productivity .Qualtrics, the world's leading insight platform, today released some surprising and some not so surprising findings from its 2016 Global Attitudes Toward Work Report, which magnifies differences among workforces around the world and also presents some striking commonalities.

Qualtrics gathered and analyzed responses from approximately 6,250 respondents in Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Spain, Sweden, the U.K. and the U.S. Respondents were asked to answer questions about themselves and about the country they live and work in.

"Looking at attitudes toward work is a valuable way to look at a country," says Ryan Smith, Qualtrics co-founder and CEO. "A country's priorities, its confidence and its collective mindset can give marketers and others clues about how best to approach it. Interestingly enough, this survey showed us that people in the U.S. and France seem happiest and most satisfied with their professional lives, while the Germans, Polish and Dutch rate themselves as the most productive."

The U.S. has the strongest case of the 'Lake Wobegon Effect' among the 14-country comparison, with American respondents estimating their own personal productivity to be a whopping 11 percentage points higher than their estimate of the average American worker's productivity.

Greece scores lowest for work/life balance while Germans, meanwhile, report the highest levels of personal productivity, and they, along with the Swedish, place the most importance on punctuality, proving that the early bird really does get the worm

And while spending time on social media is a pretty universal mode of procrastination, it turns out that Greek employees used it the most, with an average of 24 minutes a day, and Americans used it the least, clocking in at 14 minute

Most people in all countries (except the Netherlands) find working for a large established company most appealing. Americans, at 38 percent, feel the preference most strongly, while the French demonstrate the strongest penchant for entrepreneurialism, with 16 percent most likely to report that working at a start-up is most appealing.

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