We all spend a LOT of time at work. And unfortunately, many of us don’t get much more out of that time other than a paycheck. But if we’re going to be at work for the majority of our waking hours every day, shouldn’t it be time well spent? I think it should.
Hopefully, you enjoy at least parts of your work. But if you’re feeling dissatisfied or bored, and want to make it more fulfilling, the 3 C’s for making the job you’re in better can help.
First of all, you need to Choose a mindset that will move you forward. Second, it’s important to Clarify what your job involves as well as what you have to give to it. And finally, you can start getting Crafty. Let me explain:
#1 – Choose: No matter what your individual circumstances are, you do have choices related to your job. I’m not saying it’s as simple as snapping your fingers and suddenly finding that you love your job, but your mindset is a huge part of whether or not you someday could. If you don’t choose to believe your job can get better, it probably can’t.
#2 – Clarify: When you’re trying to make your job better, it’s important to know what you’re starting with. For example, what tasks do you need to perform? What are you naturally good at? When you know what your job requires of you and what you have to offer, you can start to see where you and your job do and do not overlap. Then you can figure out where to make the changes that will have the most impact.
#3 – Craft: The final C comes from Job Crafting – a term coined by researchers Jane Dutton and Amy Wresniewski in 2001. You can craft your job in three main areas: tasks, relationships, and cognition. As you craft these aspects of your job to be more in line with your strengths and motivations, you’ll discover more satisfaction and meaning in your work.
To illustrate, there is a hospital custodian who viewed her job as integral to the hospital’s mission of helping sick children get healthy (cognition), spent extra time connecting with patients and their families (relationships), and added tasks that were meaningful, such as asking patients what they needed and finding some way to get it for them (tasks). She crafted her job into work that she loved to do, and through which she could make a meaningful difference in people’s lives.
Veterans Day is today, and I believe that we honor the sacrifices our servicemen and women have made by making the most of the opportunities they helped provide for us. This includes not spending our work days wishing we were somewhere else. Or even better, crafting our jobs into meaningful work that is both satisfying to us and makes a positive difference in other people’s lives.