Where do American workers want to work? At a small, collaborative company established in its marketplace. And to find their ideal workplace, they would give up such benefits as vacation time and a 401(k) if they thought their job would satisfy them.

Or at least that's what one could deduce from the results of a Harris Poll done for client Spherion, a national staffing firm. The "WorkSphere" online survey focused on happiness at work and gathered information from nearly 900 employed adults.

Pollsters asked respondents various questions designed to elicit information on what makes them happy, or unhappy, on the job, and what an ideal work environment looked like to them. Overall, nine in 10 said they were at least somewhat happy at work, but just 29 percent said they thought they worked in a happy environment. Compensation and job security were important, the survey found, but not in any overriding way.

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Dan Cook

Dan Cook is a journalist and communications consultant based in Portland, OR. During his journalism career he has been a reporter and editor for a variety of media companies, including American Lawyer Media, BusinessWeek, Newhouse Newspapers, Knight-Ridder, Time Inc., and Reuters. He specializes in health care and insurance related coverage for BenefitsPRO.