Just as you suspected: Your boss is probably happier than you.
So suggests a new report from the Pew Research Center, which scoured one of its recent surveys to find that bosses were more satisfied with their jobs, finances and family life than were their underlings. For instance, 69% of bosses said they were “very satisfied” with their current job, while only 48% of other workers felt the same way.
Those who have reached the top were also less likely to say that parenthood got in the way of advancing their career: Among bosses with kids, only 17% thought it had been an obstacle, compared with 33% of other working parents.
Pew also detected a political divide between bosses and other workers, with 53% of bosses saying they were Republican or leaned that way, compared with only 37% of other workers, who leaned more heavily Democrat than top managers.
But in other ways, bosses are much like the people they boss around.
For example, Pew found bosses and other workers held similar views on gender discrimination in the workplace. Exactly the same percentage of bosses and other workers said that men generally earned more than women for doing the same work.
Roughly half of bosses said men had an easier time getting a top job in government or business -- and so did roughly half of other workers.
Pew also found little difference in religious practices: Bosses were about as likely as other workers to go to religious services at least once a week. Those at the top were also about as likely as workers further down the totem pole to call themselves atheist, agnostic or “nothing in particular,” Pew said.
The survey also showed that bosses and other workers largely agreed on what they valued in a job, such as doing work they enjoyed, job security and the ability to take time off for children or family needs.
The one big difference? Bosses were less concerned about having a job with good benefits, with only 26% of top managers saying it was "extremely important" to them, compared with 35% of other workers.
The newly released findings come from an October survey of more than 2,000 adults, including 1,300 people who were working. Interviews were conducted in English and Spanish on landline telephones and cellphones.
The same survey also showed that young women were nearer to closing the gender gap in wages than women of earlier generations.