Posts Tagged ‘work

16
May
16

Eleven Signs You’ve Stayed In Your Job Too Long

Below is an article by Liz Ryan entitled, Eleven Signs You’ve Stayed In Your Job Too Long (link).

We got a call from Adrienne, who told us her story.

“I started with this company when there were 140 employees here, and I stayed here during the big growth period while the company grew to 2,500 employees. Those days were fun.

“Sadly, the company stopped growing at that point and started to focus on saving money and cutting costs, above all other priorities,” said Adrienne.

“All the innovative ideas we used to have went out the window. The old CEO left and a new CEO came in.

“This company turned from a great place to work into a horrible place. People started leaving and then the company became a revolving door. I feel like an idiot for staying here so long. I’ve been in the company for 12 years, and most of my co-workers who walk in here don’t make it a year.”

“What do you want to do now?” we asked Adrienne.

“I want to get out of this company and remember how to use my brain and my creativity,” she said. Adrienne took a contract engagement just to get out of her company, and when the contract was coming to a close she launched a job search.

“I feel like a human being again,” she told us. “I was a fearful rabbit in my old job, because the environment was so bad. Now I have the confidence to get another great job. I’ll never get myself trapped in a toxic environment again!”

It is easy to lose track of the passage of time when your job feels secure. We can easily be lulled into a stupor. That’s bad, because when you fall asleep on your career you lose touch with the outside world and the market for your talents.

Your skills can fall behind the market. Whether you work in a toxic workplace like Adrienne’s or a wonderful workplace, falling  asleep on your career still does damage to your marketability.

Here are 11 signs that you’ve stayed in your current job too long!

You’ve stayed in your job too long when:

1. You can’t think of three other employers in your city who have people with skills like yours on their teams, because you’re out of touch with your local talent market.

2. Someone asks you, “What were you working on in 2012?” (or any year) and you can’t remember, because the years you’ve spent in your job blend together in your mind.

3. You can’t answer the question, “What are the three top skills that someone like you needs in order to be marketable today?” because you don’t know which skills people need.

4. Your resume is way out of date.

5. You are not working on any projects that excite or inspire you.

6. You look forward to events taking place outside of work — a wedding, a fishing trip or another occasion — but not to anything you’re doing on the job.

7. The minute you leave your workplace, your work-brain turns off. You don’t have good ideas about how to do your job anymore, either because you’re burnt out on the job or because you’re sick of pitching good ideas that no one wants to hear.

8. You’ve started to think, “Maybe every job is equally bad, and no one has fun at work.” (It’s not true!)

9. You’re way too young to think about retirement, but you think about it anyway.

10. You hate it when you meet new people and they ask you “What do you do professionally?” because you care so little about your job.

11. You hate to get up in the morning and go to work.

It is ironic that we grew up learning to seek job security but when we’ve got it, it can turn stale very quickly. Creative people need stimulation in order to stay awake and interested. Your brain needs a workout as much as your body does!

The job market is the best it’s been in years. You can launch a stealth job search and get into a new job that will bring your senses back to life. Start by thinking about your ideal next career move. Don’t limit yourself — it’s your career, and your reinvention!

Liz Ryan is the CEO and founder of Human Workplace. Follow her on Twitterand read the rest of her Forbes.com columns here.

21
Jun
15

20 Signs You’re Doing Better Than You Think You Are

20 Signs You’re Doing Better Than You Think You Are, originally found at Stumble.

  1. You paid the bills this month, and maybe even had extra to spend on non-necessities. It doesn’t matter how much you belabored the checks as they went out, the point is that they did, and you figured it out regardless.
  2. You question yourself. You doubt your life. You feel miserable some days. This means you’re still open to growth. This means you can be objective and self-aware. The best people go home at the end of the day and think: “or… maybe there’s another way.”
  3. You have a job. For however many hours, at whatever rate, you are earning money that helps you eat something, sleep on something, wear something every day. It’s not failure if it doesn’t look the way you thought it would – you’re valuing your independence and taking responsibility for yourself.
  4. You have time to do something you enjoy. Even if “what you enjoy” is sitting on the couch and ordering dinner and watching Netflix.
  5. You are not worried about where your next meal is coming from. There’s food in the fridge or pantry, and you have enough to actually pick and choose what you want to eat.
  6. You can eat because you enjoy it. It’s not a matter of sheer survival.
  7. You have one or two truly close friends. People worry about the quantity but eventually tend to realize the number of people you can claim to be in your tribe has no bearing on how much you feel intimacy, acceptance, community, or joy. At the end of the day, all we really want are a few close people who know us (and love us) no matter what.
  8. You could afford a subway ride, cup of coffee, or the gas in your car this morning. The smallest conveniences (and oftentimes, necessities) are not variables for you.
  9. You’re not the same person you were a year ago. You’re learning, and evolving, and can identify the ways in which you’ve changed for better and worse.
  10. You have the time and means to do things beyond the bare minimum. You’ve maybe been to a concert in the last few years, you buy books for yourself, you could take a day trip to a neighboring city if you wanted – you don’t have to work all hours of the day to survive.
  11. You have a selection of clothing at your disposal. You aren’t worried about having a hat or gloves in a blizzard, you have cool clothes for the summer and something to wear to a wedding. You not only can shield and decorate your body, but can do so appropriately for a variety of circumstances.
  12. You can sense what isn’t right in your life. The first and most crucial step is simply being aware. Being able to communicate to yourself: “something is not right, even though I am not yet sure what would feel better.”
  13. If you could talk to your younger self, you would be able so say: z “We did it, we made it out, we survived that terrible thing.” So often people carry their past traumas into their present lives, and if you want any proof that we carry who we were in who we are, all you need to do is see how you respond to your inner child hearing, you’re going to be okay, from the person they became.
  14. You have a space of your own. It doesn’t even have to be a home or apartment (but that’s great if it is). All you need is a room, a corner, a desk, where you can create or rest at your discretion; where you govern who gets to be part of your weird little world, and to what capacity. It’s one of the few controls we can actually exert.
  15. You’ve lost relationships. More important than the fact that you’ve simply had them in the first place is that you or your former partner chose not to settle. You opened yourself to the possibility of something else being out there.
  16. You’re interested in something. Whether it’s now how to live a happier life, maintain better relationships, reading or movies or sex or society or the axis on which the world spins, something intrigues you to explore it.
  17. You know how to take care of yourself. You know how many hours of sleep you need to feel okay the next day, who to turn to when you’re heartbroken, what you have fun doing, what to do when you don’t feel well, etc.
  18. You’re working toward a goal. Even if you’re exhausted and it feels miles away, you have a dream for yourself, however vague and malleable.
  19. But you’re not uncompromisingly set on anything for your future. Some of the happiest and best adjusted people are the ones who can make any situation an ideal, who are too immersed in the moment to intricately plan and decidedly commit to any one specific outcome.
  20. You’ve been through some crap. You can look at challenges you currently face and compare them to ones you thought you’d never get over. You can reassure yourself through your own experience. Life did not get easier, you got smarter.
08
Apr
14

Do we give enough credit to the individual worker?

Do we give enough credit to individual workers? Original article seen below is found here

In 1993, Robert Henderson became responsible for opening a factory to build the most powerful commercial jet engine in history: the GE90. It was the first commercial engine that GE had designed from scratch in more than two decades. Developing it took four years and cost more than $1.5 billion.

Henderson and a small group of his managers decided to build the engine at an empty GE plant in Durham, North Carolina. And, while Henderson isn’t one to throw around the word “radical,” he decided to have the assembly work done in the most radical fashion possible. So radical was it, in fact, that some things made even Henderson uncomfortable. “My outlook was ‘Let’s push the envelope as far as we can at the start, because it’s the only chance we’ll get to do that,'” says Henderson, now 56, who had started a factory from scratch once before for GE. “What you establish is what gets perpetuated. Starting a culture is so much easier than changing a culture.”

Six years after opening, the GE/Durham aircraft-engine plant is a totally self-managing facility. Workers manage everything from process-improvement and work schedules to overtime budgets. How did such a place come to be? How did Henderson and his colleagues shatter the command-and-control system that has governed factory work for more than a century?

Those involved with GE/Durham agree that after Henderson’s vision, the most important factor was the absence of an existing plant. “Durham was a ‘green-field’ site, a fresh start,” says Paula Sims, who managed the plant from 1995 until this past summer. “Because it was green-field, the business practices could be very different.”

Before opening GE/Durham, Henderson’s team visited other factories, looking for ideas and techniques that involved giving people on the factory floor authority and independence. Frank Woolard, now 56, a manager of technical-support operations, suggested an unusual idea — requiring every GE/Durham technician to have an FAA mechanic’s license. “He said, ‘Let’s put that down as a starting point,’ ” says Henderson. “That would mean we’d start with a better caliber of employee, and we wouldn’t have to spend time in fundamental training.” Jack Fish, 42, the plant’s founding manager, says that Henderson “didn’t want to see supervisors, he didn’t want to see forklifts running all over the place, he didn’t even want it to look traditional. There’s clutter in most plants, racks of parts and so on. He didn’t want that.”

Beyond a highly skilled workforce, a minimum of bureaucracy, and self-managing teams, the other principles for GE/Durham fell into place quickly. Each engine would be built by a single group of people, and that group would “own” the engine — from initial assembly to the moment it’s put on the truck. Today, GE/Durham team members take such pride in the engines they make that they routinely take brooms in hand to sweep out the beds of the 18-wheelers that transport those engines — just to make sure that no damage occurs in transit.

The assembly process eliminated or outsourced all nonessential tasks. Parts arrive in Durham in kits that are ready-made for building specific modules, or else they are packaged into kits by contract workers at the plant. Equipment maintenance and the cleaning of areas like bathrooms are contracted out; team members keep their own areas clean. “We didn’t want people doing anything that wasn’t involved with the skills they had,” says Henderson.

The result, says Henderson, who is still a senior manager for GE Aircraft Engines, is a workplace that astonishes even him. “I was just constantly amazed by what was accomplished there,” he says. “I had a vision, but I never imagined that all the details would be filled in as they have been. I used to tell Paula [Sims], ‘You’ve taken this to a point beyond where anybody could be as good as you are.’ ”

The system at GE/Durham — where there are 170-plus employees, all reporting to a single plant manager — can’t apply to all settings. Jack Fish, who now manages a 4,000-person facility for GE’s locomotive- manufacturing division, says, “Durham is truly special. What they’re doing there works only with a certain size of business. You couldn’t do that with a 2,000-person facility. You’d run out of runway with that kind of structure.”

Henderson says that the central lesson of GE/Durham has nothing to do with people not having a boss, or with people setting their own overtime hours: “We tend not to ask enough of people. People can do more than we give them credit for. We insist on maintaining tight control, and we don’t need to.”




Quotes:

"We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth... For my part, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst; and to provide for it." - Patrick Henry

"Politicians and diapers both need to be changed, and for the same reason." - Anonymous

"Right is right, even if everyone is against it, and wrong is wrong, even if everyone is for it." - William Penn

"Naturally the common people don't want war; neither in Russia, nor in England, nor in America, nor in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country" - Hermann Goering

"I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do this I keep on doing." - Romans 7:18-19

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." - Mark Twain

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