The butchers at Bayside Meats and Deli took time out from their busy day to chew the fat with Bay Post/Moruya Examiner reporter Sally Foy yesterday, responding to reports that they are among the happiest people in the workforce.
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A Galaxy poll of consumers on the perceived happiness of workers found that butchers were the most friendly and contented workers in Australia, and Ricky Beaves agrees.
Mr Beaves became a butcher 35 years ago and is happy every day.
“At the time I went into it simply because it was a job,” he said. “I’m lucky that I’ve always enjoyed it.”
Responding to the survey results, Mr Beaves says he is particularly happy working in Batemans Bay because it is such a “fantastic” area.
“We’ve got a great customer base and the customers that aren’t our regulars are usually on holidays, so they aren’t stressed or demanding,” he said.
Being a successful butcher has more to do with personality than anything else, Mr Beaves said.
“We are in the full view of the public all the time,” he said.
“We have fun with our customers.”
Mr Beaves said a combination of health and job security contributed to his overall sense of wellbeing.
“It’s a physical job so most of us are reasonably fit, and we all love a feed of steak which is brain food and keeps you healthy and happy,” he said.
“There is also the fact that this is a fairly secure industry in terms of jobs because people will always have to eat, and they like the personal service.”
Colleague Scott Thornton blushed when asked if it was true butchers had a better sex-life than the average blue-collar worker.
“Since the survey came out all the old ladies have been asking us that question,” he said. “But none of the young ones, so I don’t know what that tells you.”
Of the 295 butchers surveyed, 76 per cent reported feeling healthier, laughing more at work and having more sex than other workers interviewed. More than half took no sick leave last year and 60 per cent described their work as fun.
At the lower end of the survey were service station attendants, bank tellers and sandwich hands, with less than 10 per cent of consumers perceiving them as happy at work.