Your job may not be as bad as you think it is…

By Jack Gourdji

Most jobs don’t meet our expectations…but the right mindset can do a lot of compensating.
You are starting a new job (it could be your first job), time to get excited! As you should be, because it’s a new opportunity and the future is ahead of you. Hopefully the job meets all of your expectations and all is wonderful! Unfortunately, we do not live in a perfect world and that is rarely the case. Fast forward a few months into the job…The work is kind of boring…I am not crazy about my boss…the commute is more of a pain than I thought…the benefits package is not that great…a couple of my co-workers are quite annoying…I often have to take work home with me to get the job done…the company seems to operate in a dysfunctional manner…and I don’t feel my work is appreciated…and the pay is not really all that great… etc.
Take a deep breath and know you are not alone. In fact, most of us have experienced much (if not all) of these “obstacles” at some point…and more. So now what? Go back and think about the primary reason(s) why you accepted this job in the first place? Was it the pay? The opportunity to get your foot in the door of a field you want to be a part of? You just needed a job? Easy commute? Fiscally sound company? Opportunity for growth? Maybe you just want to build up your portfolio?
Unrealistic expectations can sometimes be your worst enemy. But that doesn’t mean you still cannot thrive. So now what? Look for another job you say? No no no…don’t say that! Also note, it never looks good on a resume to be jumping around from job to job with only short stays. Employers like stability…one reason being, they feel you will leave them too!
Have a conversation with yourself (even better to run it by a good friend). You say opportunity for growth AND this job is in the field you want to gain experience in were the primary reasons you accepted the position? Despite the “obstacles” does that still hold true? Remember, a job is a means to an objective. In this scenario, each day that passes gains you experience. Experience that can help you grow at the current job AND that you can use elsewhere. Can you grow at this job if your performance deserves it? If your answer is at worst…maybe…then that “far from ideal boss” could still be a “means” for you to achieve one of your objectives…growth via a promotion and or a pay increase. As time goes by, that “maybe” however, does need to change to a yes.
OK, so it sounds like I am saying, just deal with all the “stuff” that goes on at the office as long as one can see a path to meeting ones objectives, correct? Well, not necessarily. Even for those whom have spent years at organizations, all too often I have seen fellow employees hit the “panic button” struggling to deal with “situations”…they messed up my pay check yet again… or dealing with change…there is no way I can work for this new boss, he just doesn’t get it! In addition to the anxiety for yourself you have created, it has to effect work performance to at least some extend. In an age of social media, texting and even emails, nothing can help “differences” you may have with someone else, more so than face to face conversations. Your boss, the HR department, your co-worker, things don’t necessarily have to always be what they are. Granted you may not make any headway, but more often than not, if the conversation is done in a professional manner, the conversation will yield some positive results.
The road to success and happiness in the business world is usually filled with many paths to take. Sometimes the best paths are not necessarily those with smooth roads, but those with many bumps and hills to climb along the way…or not. “Pull out your map” and stop and take a look at where you are for a moment and where you want to go. Put the emotions aside and decide how best to reach your destination. Actually, you deserve more than a moment, take your time and give it careful thought. Often, we will find we are not as off track as we may feel we are and staying the course may not be such a bad idea.