Does your job suck?
Or do you think that’s a bit extreme? Maybe you’re thinking “Its doesn’t actually suck, but it could be a lot better”. Well guess what? It sucks! You will never ever get the opportunity to live those moments over. Every second you spend in a job that isn’t challenging, inspiring and motivating, or at the very least taking you closer to your life goals, is a moment of your life wasted. So be honest. You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge and self awareness is the first step to enlightenment.
Culture of bullying. This is absolutely 100% always due to poor leadership. There is no excuse for allowing bullying in the workplace and leaders who allow it are showing themselves up to be weak and ineffective. The best way to appear to be competent when you’re not is to divide and conquer, keeping people weak and threatened is a great way to control them. A culture of bullying always comes from the top down. Most people don’t want to be bullies, but if they’re constantly being kicked from above, its a natural tendency to wield power in the only way they can, on those below them. And bullying is learned behaviour – if they learned their “leadership” skills from a bully, then that’s how they think “Leaders” should behave. Model The Way is one of the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership and if your role models are bullies your company is in big trouble! But the thing about bullies is they are usually cowards, if you stand up to them and tell them their behaviour is unacceptable they will almost always stop. Or they might fire you – but isn’t that better than being bullied every day of your working life?
Its never going to get better. I often hear bosses complaining their people are not motivated enough. Well, what do they expect when they haven’t given them a clear vision of their future? People need to come into work with a sense of purpose and of working towards a better future, not just their own, but how what they do makes the world a better place. Now the thing is, if your bosses don’t know this, it up to you to take control and show them what your your vision for the future is. One of the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership is Inspire a Shared Vision – and leadership can start from the moment you decide to take it on. Maybe they’ve been waiting for someone to create a bigger vision for them. And if they’re a company with no vision, why are you wasting your precious life there? Start looking for a company with a vision you can align yours with!
Its not challenging enough. Often jobs are not very challenging in the beginning. But, no matter where you are in your career, its up to you to use your spare time to grow your skills and to develop ways to be able to take on more challenging roles. Most companies don’t want to challenge their people too hard because often challenge creates stress and stress creates mistakes, sometimes costly ones! If you show yourself to be someone who enjoys a challenge and is able to cope with a certain amount of stress, you will be noticed pretty fast! Learn to start challenging every process with the question “Is there a way we could do this better?” and pretty soon you will get the challenges you’re looking for! Challenging the Process is one of the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership and a company which does this routinely is a company which values growth and leadership. And if its not a company that cares about doing things better, you should start looking for one that does, because you can be sure they are looking for you!
We’re always firefighting. This is so common and incredibly stressful and also totally ineffective. Companies who spend most of their time putting out fires lack direction and vision. Effectively, leaders who don’t have a clear vision are always looking backwards! Imagine you tried to drive down Sheikh Zayed Road in reverse – pretty soon you would be in a major fire fighting situation and you would very quickly lose sight of your vision and purpose! A well lead company will always focus on enabling their teams to act effectively and in alignment with their overall vision for the future. Putting resources in place to enable their teams to act is a major element of leadership and one of the Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership. If your company doesn’t have the resources or a vision for the future they are always going to be struggling with firefighting and you are always going to be stressed! Which is going to shorten your life considerably.
Everyone is miserable here. Its amazing to me how large companies don;t pay much attention to the happiness quotient of their workforce! Things are changing fast but there’s often still and attitude of “You’re here to work, not have fun”. Yes you’re here to work, but work is easier and more effective when you are happy, enthusiastic and energised. You’re more effective, more efficient and less stressed when you wok in an atmosphere of encouragement and celebration. My friend Glenda made it her mission to become the Director Of Happiness for her organisation and at the end of every project she asked her team what they could have done to bring more “ease and joy” to the job. In a year she increased her profits by over 80%! Why not appoint yourself Director of Happiness in your organisation and lead by Encouraging The Heart?
My boss is an ass. Its the number one reason why people leave their jobs! The question is, is your boss really an ass or is she challenged just as much as you are by the previous five reasons? This could be an opportunity to get a powerful ally for change. It might be tough but take every opportunity you can to really get to know your boss. Find out what motivates them, what excites them, what they fear, what they love. You boss is human too, and underneath all that cranky demandingness might be a person crying out for someone to stop fighting them and work with them to make things better. Learn to lead up and influence the people who are causing your problems to be better. On the other hand, if they really are an ass then its time to start looking for a new job!