I work a lot with people at all levels who are in professional transitions and what I often hear these days is not only: ”I want a job where I can make a difference,” but “I want work to be fun.” Well what does fun actually mean to you?
Careers have many stages and each offers opportunities and challenges to building fun into the routines and rewards of work. (Right off, let’s be clear: I’m not talking about being the “class clown” or even finding the humor in life–although having a healthy dose of laughter and humor in life goes a long way to reducing stress and increasing joy.) This blog is to help readers identify and define the key elements that will make work life a productive and positive journey.
For me, in my coaching role, fun is working with highly self-motivated people, who are ready to do the homework and due diligence required to take on a new role or make a job/career change. Fun is also being seen as a value-added resource whose support and guidance (and friendship) can help someone move forward. It’s being a sole practitioner (by choice) who can be working with people half-way around the world or four towns over. It’s a 7:30am scheduled coaching call, a coffee/lunch/visit to a museum with a friend during a weekday and receiving an early evening (and yes, an occasional Sunday night) text, “Do you have 5 minutes to talk?” Fun is understanding that although my daily planner is still blank for September, I get to decide how to fill it. Fun is being prepared for 60-hour work weeks and expecting the unexpected. Fun is stretching myself professionally–because for me work gives me unlimited opportunities to learn, yet never master a skill; to try something new, yet not lose my core strengths or interests. For example, right now I’m taking classes on how to use social media more effectively and writing/growing the daily Networking Know-How tips and weekly career blog–both taking me way out of my comfort zone, yet giving me a great sense of achievement in voicing my opinion on the web, and producing 20 dailies and 4 blogs a month (if my 8th grade English teacher could only see me now!).