Job Action Day! That’s Why They Call It Work: Tough Jobs, Successful Careers
Once again, we are delighted to participate in Job Action Day. This year’s theme is, “That’s Why They Call it Work: Tough Jobs, Successful Careers.” This prompt could lead me in many directions. Let’s focus on the subject of making the most of a tough job and how to transition to a successful career. What that means to you is unique based on your skills, aspirations, and motivation. A tough job does not always mean working on an Alaskan fishing vessel. Blue collar, white collar, academic…any job can be a tough job. Also, a tough job can be rewarding and enjoyable.
Doing What You Love and Loving What You Do
You can find numerous books, blogs, and career professionals who will proclaim that you should “follow your bliss.” Consider this: Is doing what you love and loving what you do the same thing? Not necessarily. Your life’s passion is signing. However, beyond your faithful pet poodle, nobody appreciates your singing. That does not mean that you can’t find work that you love to do. With introspection and exploration, you can find work that you love to do.
It is valuable to assess your skills, talents, and knowledge. How do those abilities translate to a career? How do you fill an employer’s needs? Study the market and determine where you fit in the job market and the training and education that you need to attract a job offer.
The Happiness Quotient: How Do You Define Success?
If your definition of success is not aligned with your job, you won’t be happy. The happiness quotient is the bottom line. Is money the sole driver for you? Perhaps you can put up with any boss and any task, as long as you make your desired salary. Other drivers are flexible work hours, amount of working hours, international travel, and firm boundary (no after-hours business calls or work). There are dozens of other drivers. Everyone has a unique set of drivers, be sure you assess and prioritize your drivers.
That’s Why They Call It Work
Many people, at one point in their career, have accepted and held a tough job purely for the paycheck. You need $x to pay the mortgage and this job provides a steady income. In that case, you have two choices: Miserably drag yourself to work each day or you can make the most of your work,. You can boost your happiness quotient. Find joy in doing the best job you can, delighting your customers, becoming an expert at something that others value, and continuously building your skills and knowledge so you can move to a better job.
Plan Your Future
Frequently I talk to clients who are planning a move from tough job A to job B, in which they will do the same functions with hopes of trading a nickel for a dime. In most cases, that does not lead to a successful career or boost your happiness quotient. Take time to plan your future. Unlike a job, a career, it requires planning, action, and follow-through. In other words, it is work to build a meaningful career.