Every individual should have the opportunity to develop the gifts which may be latent in him. Alone in that way can the individual obtain the satisfaction to which he is justly entitled; and alone in that way can the community achieve its richest flowering. For everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.”
- Albert Einstein, as quoted in Educational Trends: Journal of Research and Interpretation (1936)
Some of my own thoughts on the quote:
To be happy in the workplace a person needs most of all to be proud of what he or she is doing. The best scenario is that a person is producing something that one can be proud of. However, one can be proud of also of the way he or she does this work or even be proud of how he or she stands for the rights of workers in the workplace.
If the reason for being proud of one's work does not exist or is taken away, work soon becomes something that is done only for the money. This is not a good situation either for the worker or the employer.
On the other hand, there is another and more sinister side to work in a modern society:
It is assumed by most people nowadays that all work is useful, and by most well-to-do people that all work is desirable. Most people, well-to-do or not, believe that, even when a man is doing work which appears to be useless, he is earning his livelihood by it — he is "employed," as the phrase goes; and most of those who are well-to-do cheer on the happy worker with congratulations and praises, if he is only "industrious" enough and deprives himself of all pleasure and holidays — in the sacred cause of labour. In short, it has become an article of the creed of modern morality that all labour is good in itself — a convenient belief to those who live on the labour of others. But as to those on whom they live, I recommend them not to take it on trust, but to look into the matter a little deeper.”
- William Morris in "Useful Work vs Useless Toil" (1885)
"Albert Einstein (14 March 1879 – 18 April 1955) was a German-born theoretical physicist who developed the general theory of relativity, effecting a revolution in physics. For this achievement, Einstein is often regarded as the father of modern physics and the most influential physicist of the 20th century. While best known for his mass–energy equivalence formula E = mc2 (which has been dubbed "the world's most famous equation"), he received the 1921 Nobel Prize in Physics "for his services to theoretical physics, and especially for his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect". The latter was pivotal in establishing quantum theory."