Enjoying Work

Do you enjoy your work?

How many jobs have you had over the years? What’s the longest you’ve stayed in a job?

Apparently some people think that staying in a job for more than a few days is a long term career. While News.com.au is reporting that Simone Francis of Sydney is typical of Gen Y, I think that she’s probably not representative of most of her peers. However, some of the attitudes reported in the article are concerning.

Simone Francis, 25, of Marrickville in Sydney’s inner west, is typical of a generation that jumps from job to job – to the frustration of employers across the country.

From waitressing to acrobatics and working in a call centre, Ms Francis’ CV shows she’s done it all.

Her longest job lasted just a few months, but Ms Francis said she had spent as little as three days in a job before offering her resignation.

“Usually, it takes a week or less than a week,” she said.

“If it’s a really good job, maybe a bit longer.

It really is a concern that some people have never been taught the skills of sticking with something for the long term. I’d suggest that Simone has missed some important life lessons while growing up.

I remember many years ago there was a lot of talk about ‘job satisfaction’. Then it became harder to find a job and the satisfaction was more about finding any kind of work. Times changed again and as Australia, and particularly Western Australia, went through boom times there was plenty of work available. With the world financial crisis continuing, we’re now back at that part of the cycle where jobs are harder to find.

People who job hop may soon find themselves unable to walk in and out of jobs simply because there won’t be jobs available.

“I just can’t take the routine of getting up and doing the same thing every day.

“I realised there was something wrong with me after I was getting paid to be in the sun, spending most of the day looking at fish and turtles (as a snorkel guide on Hamilton Island) and I still didn’t like it.

“After a week, I was bored and told my boss: ‘OK, I’ll work till the end of the month.”‘

I wonder if parents have raised up a generation of young people with far too many choices. Have parents given their children the impression that life is only about doing what you want to do?

It seems that some people are happy to live on the dole until the next job that they think they might like comes along. That means that they expect those of us who pay tax to support them simply because they refuse to do something they don’t enjoy. Let me tell you, I don’t enjoy supporting lazy people but because I pay tax, I have to support you. I have no problem supporting those who are genuinely looking for work but it gets under my skin when people see unemployment benefits as a viable alternative to taking responsibility for their own life.

“Why bother doing a job you hate? Why does anyone bother doing anything they don’t want to do?” she said.

“I used to do that, but I thought: ‘What the hell am I doing conforming to a job when I hate it?”‘

Thankfully I love my job but part of that is because I work on my own attitude. There are parts of my job that I don’t enjoy but I realise that those parts are part of the package. That’s life.

What about you? Do you enjoy your work? Do you put up with tasks you don’t enjoy because you understand your responsibilities? What would be your ultimate job?

Simone has said that the article misrepresents her and tarnishes her reputation. You can read her response at the website of Nomadic Hands, a group she has formed to raise awareness of human rights and animal welfare overseas. This article at the site claims that she has been badly treated. She certainly has lofty (though some would say unrealistic) goals for Nomadic Hands.

Nomadic Hands vision is to be the largest help network and inspirational peace project in the world collaborating with individuals, groups and organisations to create a global society where all life is treated with kindness and respect.

We create healthy and authentic alliances between all countries on Earth by accepting and appreciating people of all nationalities, celebrating cultural diversity and developing greater understanding of varying customs and values.

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About the author

Rodney Olsen

Rodney is a husband, father, cyclist, blogger and podcaster from Perth Western Australia.

He previously worked in radio for about 25 years but these days he spends his time at Compassion Australia, working towards releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name.

The views he expresses here are his own.

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  • Yeah, my generation isn’t big on sticking with much of anything (except the idea that we know what is best for us). I’ve been at my current job for 4 years…longer than I had planned, as it was just to be a job for when I was at school. My only plans for leaving are if I do decide to pursue being a teacher, but that’ll at least a year off. I like my job and will likely stick with it unless I pursue teaching or wife/mommyhood.

  • I don’t think Simone understands that Nomadic Hands won’t work without the staff and volunteers sometimes giving selflessly and always working responsibly. To get to be the “largest help network” means coordinating a large number of volunteers and paid workers. I think she will get a shock if she tries to manage some of her fellow Gen Yers!

  • Same here. My Brother did invest time – and money – for an apprentice. She left after a while, because she was “homesick”. She didn´t put a thought on the trouble she had caused (very small company).

    Over here in Germany a book-series started, “Generation dumb”. And to my “horror” I found indeed my generation in parts.

    I´m relieved, though, to say I have the same job the seventh year now. Like it mostly and accept the not-so-nice-stuff as well.
    But btw… doesn´t every generation come up with “something”? 😉

  • Hehe Iris, I would read that book ‘Generation Dumb’. Sounds good 🙂

    I agree, Rodney. I’m a GenYer and it frustrates me when so many people my age that I know have that attitude. With some people, it seems that every time I catch up with them they have a new job because the old one got ‘boring’ after a few months.

    I enjoy my job. It has its good and bad points like any job. I think jobs are like relationships. When the novelty wears off, you have to decide whether you want to stick it out and sticking it out pays off in the long run. I was at my previous job for over three years and felt like quitting several times but in the end I was glad I didn’t because it got better again. Few people have loyalty or commitment anymore and this shows up in relationships as well as jobs.

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