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What makes a job “good”?

What was the worst job you ever had?

Think about it! Most of us have something come to mind fairly quickly (hopefully not too many of you immediately think it’s your current job . . . ). Anyway, what made it your worst job? Sometimes it’s the work itself (whether it was overly tedious or physically/mentally difficult or took place in difficult circumstances or whatever). Often it’s the people (or a particular individual) you worked with.

What was the best job you ever had?

Again, think about it. What did you love/like? Did certain people make the experience better?

Looking back at the two different experiences, what factors are in play in your current situation? What are you doing to affect your employees’ experiences? How do you think they’ll look back on this job and you as a manager? Will this go down as one of their worst experiences or one of their best?

We all see the world through our own eyes, but once in a while, it’s good to try to see things from others’ perspectives. Have you tried to “see what they see” with your staff when doing their jobs? When is the last time you shadowed an employee or offered to help them with a task or project? Do they have reason to believe you are really on their side or are you the “boss” who comes in and orders them around?

What can you do to make the experience better?

Often, it’s the simple things. Time and time again it’s been reinforced that employees want to feel that they make a difference and are appreciated. How often have you thanked them for their efforts? When you do say thanks, is it a token comment or do you really mean it? Does your staff know that what they do affects your organization or do they feel like the “department that doesn’t matter”? As manager, your role strongly influences how your employees feel about their jobs.

What have you done or are you doing to make this the best job they’ve ever had?

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