I recently read this article (the one below) while at lunch at my full time job. I took this job, feeling it was a great opportunity to be part of something bigger. A time to advance my career in the automotive world and utilize ALL of my skills. After working there for a about a year and a half, there was a feeling that things were not as they should be. As the article notes, there are 7 major signs, I noticed that basically all of them fit the way I felt. As I discussed the future of my career and what options we felt we had with my wife I realized that the section titled “Challenge in absent” hit me the most. Most of my working life I have spent looking for a position where my skills were all being challenged. As I would work for a company, over time I would notice that because I was good at the one particular thing that I was hired for, I would be isolated to doing just that. The excitement of a new job would keep me going for a while until, but it was not long, the day would come that I would be focused on one area. My soul would feel like it was dying as all of the other skill sets I have worked so hard to develop over the years would remain “At home”. It has taken years to isolate this area of frustration, feeling that it was just a change in my job. The excitement had died and resentment filled its place. Where is it that I could exercise all of my skills in a productive career developing way?
Over 2 years ago, I started a small business performing light automotive services because of a job loss. I did not realize it at that time but I was on the right path. Within a very short time I took the job I mentioned above for the fear on insecurity in my finances. As the pattern exists, I was excited to be in a new role. I worked my way up the ladder and within a short time I was back to doing one thing and the dying feeling began to set in. Finally realizing the pattern of frustration, I started looking for a solution until it hit me (some inspiration involved, I’m sure) I needed to re-launch my small business. Not limiting me to the light services but open it up to all of the areas I am comfortable with. Not only was I now exercising all of my skills, I have taken on the challenge of finding a way to make them all work together. Now I am sure that the “Initial excitement” is still taking its toll on this option as well but I am hopeful that this is a long term solution.
All that being said, this is my question. If you are a “Jack of all trades” or have skills over a wide spectrum of arenas, is there a way to be an employee and not have to suffer from imbalance or is Self-employment the only way to go?
Here is the article that I read:
7 Very Telling Signs Your Job is a Poor Fit
Oct 29 2014
At some point in our work lives, many of us will find ourselves in the wrong job. (I hear of this quite often.) Specific fault can be difficult, and likely futile to assign. However, one day you may look around to find that your work life is dangerously out of sync. Nothing is more alarming than throwing yourself into your role — and realizing things have taken an obvious turn. The important element here? Identifying the problem for what it really is (in very short shrift), and acting to make changes. Poor matches do happen. Jobs morph. Great bosses move on. We grow and change. Any of these could serve as a contributing accelerant.
So, make every attempt to let yourself off the hook and avoid a long-term “soul sucking” experience. Poor fit is a very common — and it is important to recognize its symptoms.
Here are a few signs worth notice:
- You feel lost.Have you experienced the classic nightmare where you arrive at class on exam day, only to realize that you’ve not purchased the textbook? This certainly should not be your work life experience during waking hours. If tasks or projects leave you feeling unprepared, take note: Something is off.
- Your strengths aren’t being tapped. Ultimately work should align with our strengths. However, if your weaknesses seem to have taken center stage — it’s unlikely you’ll stay energized for the long haul. Have a conversation about this soon as possible.
- Challenge is absent. Certainly, work is about task completion. It is our responsibility to make that happen on a daily basis. However, if opportunities to enhance your skill set are completely absent, this can be a key problem. If you feel as if you are “standing still” skill-wise, it’s time to broach the topic with your boss. Remember — “withering on the vine” is not a viable career strategy.
- You feel disconnected.Does it feel as if the team is clearly on one page and you are on another? Whether you work in customer service, sales or consulting — if you do not identify with the vision of the organization, the person-job match may be off. If you see yourself as an island (and everyone is speaking an entirely different “language”), it may be time to explore a change.
- You can’t seem to complete anything. Does every project seem pointless and your motivation is at a low? Are you dealing with looming deadlines with a blank screen continually staring back at you? Enough said.
- You are in avoidance mode.Be honest — the process of going to work is excruciating. If you had your druthers, you would never set foot in the office again. If you’ve tried to make things work and simply cannot envision a future for yourself in your role, you have a serious problem.
- You are in blame mode.You certainly can own the part of the problem that you’ve controlled (you’ve ignored your “inner voice”, for example). However, guaranteed, there were plenty of other factors in play. The bottom line is this: It’s time to act. Blame doesn’t help things resolve — only a plan to move forward will.
Over the years, I’ve heard these issues expressed many times. They are clear indicators that something needs to change. It’s critical to address the issues with your supervisor, trusted mentor or career professional. Remember, fit is imperative to remain engaged long-term.