I was at a great seminar the other day dealing with finding one’s dream job. The presenter had some great ideas on it including clarity of mission and elevator pitch and networking to find that dream job.
She also talked about having a job that you hate and commented on the high number of people who say they are in that category, hence, the message to find a job you love.
It all makes sense and she did a fine job presenting it.
All of that is well and good. But I have one question: why do we hate our jobs?
Stupid question to many I would guess. There are many reasons like having a “bad” boss, not liking the people we work with, nature of work, pay, benefits, hours, and mammy other reasons that are innumerable.
But think about this, you may not like it but hear it out: could the problem be us?
I think we have forgotten that the purpose of work is to put bread on the table. I grew up in the 50’s with parents who survived the depression. I don’t recall them ever saying they hated a job they had, even in the 20’s and 30’s when they had tough ones. Their purpose was to survive, and when they married and had my brother and I their purpose was to support us in the best way they could. They were unselfish in what they wanted as their goal was to provide us as best they could. I was also raised to understand serving customers as they were in their own business, a valuable lesson for the self employed and those working for others (their customers!)
That is not to say I think people who hate their jobs are selfish; but I do know that the jobs I didn’t care for were due to my needs not being met, whatever they were.
I believe that in addition to making a living our other purpose in life is to help one another, a spiritual principal endorsed by most religions. It also works in one’s job and job success. In my career I learned that problem solving was my forte and I practiced it in every job I had. I was engrossed in the task at hand and not with my pay or any other personal issues I had with the job. In return for serving the company, I also got promotions and raises due to the contributions I was making to the firm. The people I worked with who were more self focused didn’t do as well, and didn’t like their jobs.
I used to think about my job as my own business; I sold my services to my customer, my employer. I got paid based on how much my value my services added, and promoted when I proved how much more I could do for THEM. Not what they could do for me. And you know what? The better I did the more I liked my job!