I'm a little late to the party, (hey, Detroit was grand!), but wanted to comment on recent releases of the 'Ten Best' vs. the 'Ten Worst' jobs. Forbes.com sums up the lists here, but the common themes surface:
(For those who don't want to visit the link, Clergy 'The least worldly are reported to be the happiest of all' won again)
1) Those who give of themselves to others find greater fulfillment and happiness.
2) Among the 'Ten Happiest' jobs, many are focused on making the lives of others better, not our own.
3) Creativity and a certain level of autonomy seem to be consistent themes.
Among the 'Ten Worst', let's see:
1) So tech jobs are all the rage, huh? (5 in this list are in the tech sector)
2) Comments here suggest 'imprisoned by hierarchical bureaucracies' as reasons for 'unhappiness.' Obviously, I work in an 'hierarchical bureaucracy,' and often admit that I didn't get into the priesthood to work in an office building downtown, but on the whole, the positives outweigh the negatives, at least for me.
3) Among the list, creativity seems stifled and, as described for law clerks, one is often subuject 'to the whims of a mercurial supervisor.'
Where are you in your position?