Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Falling into the trap of the 8-5pm desk job

Sitting in rush hour traffic, I became aware of the miserable people surrounding me on the road.  Sure these people looked pissed to be sitting slow moving traffic in sweltering heat, but I couldn't help but wonder what else made them unhappy.  Their faces showed frustration and boredom. Suburb commuters often lose an hour of their life sitting in traffic to and from work.  Many of my fellow traffic dwellers probably sat at a desk job that gives them little to no self worth.  I don't love my current job, but I am also not miserable.  It gives me the flexibility to come and go as I please.  The flexibility is the number one reason I have a hard time moving on. Here are some characteristics of a job I think contribute to job satisfaction. 
Flexibility- Finding a job that allows you to come and go as you please, or making your own hours is a huge plus.  Finding managers who trust employees to get the job done is a rare find.   Often I am more productive out of the office, away from distracting co-workers.
 Generous vacation time- Work hard and play hard.  I think taking a break from the daily routine helps employees become more productive in the long run. 
Liking your BossI've found liking my boss can make or break a job. It contributes to overall morale.
Location- Living as close to work as possible and eliminating rush hour drive time.
Opportunity for Advancement-  Whether it is title changes or salary increases, advancing within your company influences positive self-esteem and increases employee productivity.  If you aren't being rewarded and acknowledged for your work, why would you want to see the company move forward?  

I loved and feared the movie Office Space which does a great job demonstrating the miserable aspects of an 8-5pm desk job.  How do we allow ourselves to fall into the trap even though we are warned ahead of time? 
I think self-employment is our best option.  Now if only I could apply self-employment to my own life. 

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