Monday, December 25, 2006

Employment Angst

Click HERE to hear a catchy little song about worker alienation, a ballad about being stuck in a job you hate. This is something I've always vowed I'd never do. For the most part, I've been pretty lucky with the jobs I've taken. There were a couple times I had to put up with some abominable situations for a few months while scouting for something better. But fortunately for me, I've always pretty much landed on my feet. So far that is.

I've thrown my hat into the ring for a new job that I may or may not get to interview for come mid January. As the date for the initial screening for that post approaches, I am doing a lot of considering about what I want from a job and what I am willing to give in return. I've got two more years before my grant runs out on my current position. Sometime between now and then I will need to find another job. So as I approach my 50th birthday I find myself trying to figure out what the heck it is I want to do with myself.

I've been thinking some of late about how and why people get locked into work that they hate. Others don't despise their jobs, but feel rather futile there - it's merely a means to pay the bills. Precious few people I know are blessed with the opportunity to make a living at something they are truly passionate about.

I'm trying to figure out what I think is a reasonable balance between my ideals of the perfect job and "settling" for what is available in the area where I live. I honestly do want my job to be something I can pour a lot of passion into, something I can be proud of, something I can build a sense of mastery in. Yet I also want my job to be something I can turn off when I go home at night - NOT something with stakes so high that it consumes me. So it will be interesting to see what sort of deal I'm able to make.

Why do you do the work that you do? On a scale of 1-10, with one being HATE the job and 10 being LOVE the job, where would you rank yourself most days?

1 comment:

papa herman said...

Initially I applied for my current job because my journey in Christ was taking me to the Orthodox Church and I felt that it would be inconsistent to work for the Episcopal Church and not be one...

I would say on most days I am probably at a 6 or 7... of course sometimes higher, sometimes lower.

I have always felt that a job is a job... I pretty much need two things to be satisfied (beyond the pay and benefits): 1) Does the job offer something --example: I once worked for a company that imported silk plants from the Orient. I could have probably traveled to China with this company... but I didnt believe in what they were doing, so I left. 2) The people you work with. The people you work with (and for) make a job too. --example: I once worked for a company that provided a needed service, but I did not care for my employeer. In a nutshell, that situation made the job stink. I was glad when I left; even though I left to work at the place that imported silk plants... oh well.

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