Updated: Sep 8, 2020
For a lot of people, the value of a job is completely in the compensation and benefits. Nothing else. This is just the reality. But I am not writing this post for those people.
I am writing this post for people who know they are capable of doing and achieving more but somehow can’t seem to break away from thinking about their jobs in this way. I am writing to people who are living and working way below their potential.
Enter COVID-19 and global scale lockdowns.
I’ve been wondering what impact this opportunity to work from home at such a scale for such an extended period of time is having on people with this view of employment. In much the same way as the adoption of digital and virtual working solutions for remote working is no longer a thing to be debated, for some roles and some people, I believe knowing what you bring to the table is no longer a thing to be taken for granted. Now that you are no longer able to justify your existence by simply showing up at work and performing work activities, you are likely to start asking yourself why you are being paid or being paid so much?… really?
Filling up your day with activities you know are unnecessary, virtual meetings with no actions or objectives, endless chat threads that surface no new actionable insights, this strategy might work for the first few days of working from home. But, as the days become weeks and weeks become months, trying to stay busy without the physical experience of travelling between locations, going to a place of work, having physical interactions in meeting rooms or casual walk-by conversations will begin to take its toll.
The missing, tangible feeling of doing things and the loss of physical activities could amplify the feelings of professional insecurity that usually go together with an unclear sense of value and purpose. In this current reality of having to work remotely, not by choice but out of compulsion, a new dimension of emptiness could now accompany the perspective of working only for the compensation and benefits. The fear that you will lose your job might become increasingly real as you realise you don’t really know or understand how important what you do really is and thus why you are being paid or paid that much.
Discovering a deeper meaning
Instead of doubling down on trying to appear busy by talking it up or jumping on anything or any call that comes up, you can tap on the uniqueness of the current situation to rediscover yourself and your true value. Hopefully, regardless of your current context, you can find your purpose and the courage and confidence to pursue it...
So to start, consider shifting your perspective of these three things:
Context: Context is everything
We need context to discover ourselves. It is who we are and how we show up in a context that reveals what we have within us and who we can be. Regardless of the context in which you find yourself, “You” are there, ergo “You” will show up one way or another and in that lies insights about who you are and who you can be.
Results: Results release value
Completing a task and achieving a result are two different things. The value of experience comes from the results achieved not from the tasks completed. By focusing on results, you peel off the blindfolds and begin to see the full extent and richness of your context and all your experiences, the true value of what they are worth to you now and on your journey into the future
Purpose: Your purpose is the problem you’ve been assigned to solve for others
Being able to offer a solution to a problem is the ultimate result because it focuses on adding value in the form of a solution to the person in a situation or context who needs the problem solved.
How can we help?
We offer “customised development consulting” to help you leverage “any context” in “building your capability” to “discover and live your purpose”.
For a start, think about your work experience so far. Having worked for 5, 10, 20, 30 years, ask yourself these two questions:
Have you been putting your life on hold because of your work, planning to start living your life when you retire or stop working or been trying to live your life despite your work (work-life balance) or you’ve been living your life through your work in a holistic way?
How has your experience of context, results and problems to solve at work help(ed) you discover your true value and sense of purpose so far?
Get in touch and let's explore together what the answers to these questions and more like it could look like for you.