Loving ones job is not only a “rare-to-find-nice-to-have”, no, it is essential for our entire society and for our overall well-being. The workplace is the place where we spend most our waking time and people hating their jobs is throughout the world one of the main reasons for economic downturns. If we would all use our unique talents to serve humanity (and we all have these talents!), there would be no unemployment and no stress-related illnesses. I have heard of a woman who makes her living dancing. Nothing else just dancing. Based in Calabar, she is such an amazing dancer that celebrities from around the country wants her to be in their videos. If you can make a very good living by dancing, you can make a living of anything! Or as Albert Schweitzer said: “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
Yesterday I was at a salon and while the lady in charge was braiding my hair, I thought how very little I envied her for her job. But then I watched the passion with which she combed and wove and suddenly I understood that this passion was exactly the reason why I opted to spend a fair amount of money for my hair instead of doing it myself since I would be wearing a wig, it didn’t have to be very well done I guess. I believe that as long as I have a disposable income I should outsource services to those whose core competency they are and who are better at them than I am, but better is not enough – they need to love what they do. I sense whether they love their job or whether I am just a duty to them that has to be endured. The moment I feel that someone is miserable doing their job, I feel bad to be their customer. I try to get out of the situation and avoid the situation in the future meaning in plain words that I can easily become a lost and therefore expensive costumer to a brand, solely because of the fact that I made one single negative experience with one of their staff. Training alone doesn’t help here. Two people can do exactly the same job and say exactly the same words we still sense whether they are passionate about what they are doing and this makes all the difference.
You might now argue that this is only true for customer facing service providers but I think it is true for everyone. Be it back-office or assembly-line, one single unmotivated team member is not only difficult to manage but can bring down the moral of an entire team. Miserable employees give others the feeling that what they are doing is unworthy, spreading a sense of embarrassment amongst those who try to be passionate.
You owe loving your job to everyone – to your customers, suppliers, partners, to your family and most importantly: to yourself! No matter how difficult your upbringing was, we are all being given opportunities again and again to create our own destiny. Or do you really want to show your children that it’s okay to be unhappy at ones job; that a life is here to be wasted? It’s unlikely that this is the kind of role model you wish to be. Or do you want to encourage them to discover their unique talents, to be driven by passion, love and a sense of purpose? Sounds more like it. So pick yourself up and remember: Love it, change it or leave it!