When I was working in health economics, we used the measure “quality-adjusted life years” to help understand the impact of different treatment regimes or health interventions (e.g. minimally invasive surgery, vaccinations, access to clean drinking water).
Someone living in poor health would have a lower quality of life than someone in near perfect health and so assigned a lower number. Seems to me that our choice of work can also be ranked in terms of impact on quality of life (this Eureka! moment just took place in my office – no knowledge is ever lost!).
That (not impossible) mission to find work that goes beyond a mere job description struck a chord with several of our contributors – as everyone brought to the table different points of view and key takeaway messages.
For everyone who may feel a little jaded about prospects out there, Joseph Tan (and I totally agree with him on this point!) assures us that finding satisfaction at work and in life can occur simultaneously. He offers us some practical points on how to start, and how to make this happen.
Marshall Goldsmith makes a valid juxtaposition of work life in the 1980s and today – saying that our working conditions make it almost essential to love the work we do as there really isn’t any time to find that fulfilment or happiness after office hours (as used to be the case).
And even if you are committed to finding a job that is aligned with your passion, Lee Hwai Tah says perhaps some people simply do not know what their passion’s sweet spot is – and goes on to share how we might discover that.
In quick succession, we have more probing questions one might ask – by Stephanie Kee trying to find herself, and her perfect job; and by Bernard Marr in trying to assess if you are a good fit for an organisation you are interviewing with. Thomas Chan shares the outcome of some difficult questions he asked himself on his road to personal development.
While you ponder how to make it happen, we thought we would also share the stories of real people who have already achieved that balance of fulfilment from both work and life; a gentleman who has spent his entire work life devoted to one company, a school teacher who has gone over and beyond in her role, an accounting and finance graduate who now spends her days teaching children the building blocks of science and technology, and last but not least a baker who turned her passion into a profitable business. Thrown in for good measure, Sarah Tan also features a lawyer who is a rocker by night.
Our featured baker might enjoy this – in our last story, Millie Ong presents her essential ingredients for job satisfaction.
The final verdict? Yes we CAN find work we love. I have.
Have a fantastic weekend all!
Published in English daily The Star, Malaysia, 7 February 2015