2021 was characterised as the year of the “great resignation”, where workers quit their jobs at historic rates. According to some studies, the trend was driven by an economic and psychological shift as employees realised the need for better work-life integration, the importance of a flexible working environment and employees generally making deliberate choices about where their careers are heading next. In addition, the great resignation was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.
So, with the changes and evolution at work, how do we stay inspired at work? How can we feel fulfilled at our jobs?
Engage in something outside of your job role
Do something that interests you, support a cause that you care about outside your job role. This will help you integrate the causes you value into your life without feeling like you are wasting your time at a job role you do not like very much. Volunteer on projects of interest outside your department or organisation. The things that really give lasting fulfillment at work are intrinsic. In the words of Indra Nooyi, “volunteer for the most difficult projects early in your career”.
Stretch yourself beyond the status quo by solving problems. Let your goal at work be to supersede your job description. As I said in my book ‘The Millennial Employee’, it takes doing beyond your job description to stand out at the workplace.
Get a mentor
Life experiences are too vast to want to experience them all by yourself. Having a mentor allows you to have insights into navigating your career path, inspiring you to set new dreams, and supporting you. For example, sometimes people feel unfulfilled at their jobs because they are due for a career reshuffling/pivot but are unable to identify it. But with a mentor, issues such as this can be quickly identified and addressed.
Be mindful not to mistake your job for your life
One of the studies conducted to explore the ‘great resignation’ phenomenon identified that there’s now a greater desire and ability for people to fit work into their lives instead of having lives that squeeze into their work. Your job is a part of your life and not the other way round. So, establish ways to integrate different aspects of your life into your day to avoid burnout.
Understanding that you matter makes a difference in how you approach your work. The best reason to do any job is because of the difference you get to make using your skill and competence, not the difference it can make to you.
Happy new year, and I wish you a fulfilling career experience this year.
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