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Hate Your Job But Don’t Know What to Do? Check This to Make up Your Mind

Hate Your Job But Don’t Know What to Do? Check This to Make up Your Mind

Do mornings bring with them a sense of impending doom?

Do you often lie in bed sleepless, hating your life and yourself?

And would your rather have your teeth pulled out, one by one, sans any anesthesia rather than going to work?

If a really stressed yes is your answer, then it’s pretty clear that you hate your job and would go through anything to be able to send in a scathing resignation letter.

The thing is, practically speaking, most of us don’t have the wherewithal to be able to simply quit a job we hate, for there are bills to be paid. So what to do when you hate your job?

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Why is it so hard to quit, and even harder to stay?

Moaning and groaning about your job on an everyday basis is not only making you miserable but also irritating everyone around you. And telling yourself that sticking to a known devil rather than trying out an unknown one is better is bad philosophy.

If you hate your job, you are probably not going to be very good at it in any case, and are setting yourself up for a big fall later; and frankly if it is getting unbearable – you need to find a way out, pronto![1]. That said, the five most common reasons people keep doing the jobs they hate are listed below, and they are pretty understandable too.

Fear of testing new waters

One of the main reasons people keep sticking to the jobs they hate, and probably end up hating themselves while they are hard at work is the fear of unknown waters. This is particularly true for people nearing retirement or women getting back to work after a maternity leave, or even employees who have stagnated in the company or at the same position for too long.

Monetary concerns

Yep, the cost of living, unpaid bills and rising debts can put the fear of God into anyone! Your rather rickety financial situation will be worsened with unemployment and so this is one reason people stay put in the jobs they hate, unable to see a way out, at least immediately.

A lull in the job market

Sometimes you stay in the job you hate simply because there seems to be a dearth of good jobs in any case. Your regular scouring of classifieds and job sites simply tells you that leaving now means you might end up unemployed for a bit

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Being miserable is okay

So you hate your job. So what. There are so many people in the world who would shrug and say “what to do when you hate your job”? Its part and parcel of life, you don’t have to like what you do – and somewhere this homily has taken root in you. And if this job is giving your family a good life, then it is well worth the sacrifice, no? Is it, truly?

All jobs are the same

And the final excuse, somehow you think that all the jobs in the world are bad and would probably end up making you miserable one way or another. Bad bosses, jealous colleagues and a workload that feels like the entire world’s weight – all jobs are like that, only … well, they aren’t.

So what to do when you hate your job? Doing nothing is a bad option.

You hate your job, that’s been established. And if you are still reading this article, you not only hate your job very much, you also abhor, despise and detest it, and this is not a transitory phase for you – you have hated your job for a while. The problem being, staying put at a job you hate and not doing anything about it, isn’t good for you, your job and both their entwined futures at all.

As we said before, a job you don’t enjoy will, if it hasn’t already, turn into a job you are not good at it. You will procrastinate, avoid added responsibilities, and basically harp and complain about it all day long – much to the ire of your colleagues, and the boss. And if your whining reaches the boss’s ears, well, soon you will be out of the job in any case.

What to do when you hate your job. Assess and take affirmative action.[2]

Frankly, as Maya Angelou put it, “If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”

And this hold true for your “what to do when you hate your job” whining too. There are basically only two things you can do: either you change your job, or at least the things you don’t like about it; or you change your attitude about it [3]

1. Is it the job, or is it you?

Being unhappy with your job, or hating your job may be an extrinsic factor, but it may arise from an intrinsic one. Are you unhappy in general and hate your life? Or is it just the job you hate? If it’s your life you are unhappy about, then decide to make small little changes every day and get all the help you need to make yourself happy, now.[4]

2. Find out what you “hate” about the job

The first thing to do when you get stuck in a “what to do when you hate your job situation” is to find out why you hate your job. Is it the mean boss? Is it the sniggering and overly competitive colleagues? A new and added responsibility that you cannot handle or are not equipped to do well? Has the workload suddenly increased or decreased? Has your job profile been changed?

Make a pros and cons list of your current job – this will help you sort out a problem (if it can be sorted) and also, make sure what you don’t want in your next job if you are going application happy.

3. Discuss your woes with your boss

Sometimes bosses are the reason you hate your job. While sometimes they are just nasty pieces of work, mostly bosses are as human as you and I. Talk to your boss, and discuss what is making you unhappy. See if a solution, or at least a part solution, can be reached – and then try and compromise a bit from your end too. And if the boss is the problem, see if your company can move you to a parallel position, under someone nicer?

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4. Unless unbearable, don’t quit

If your job is not driving you up a wall and is also compensating you decently for your troubles, quitting may not make you as happy as you thought it would, especially if you haven’t landed another gig. Being unemployed will make you miss that salary, overanalyze your behavior and perhaps think yourself as a quitter.

If you have to leave your job, make sure you have landed another one, preferably one that is your dream job, or has all the attributes your current job lacks.[5]

5. Always be a good worker

So you hate your job and no compromise or new job is in sight, and you are not quitting either. That doesn’t mean that you will not work well or be unprofessional – hate your job as much as you want, but you still have to do it to the best of your abilities. Basically train your mind to be strong![6]

6. Try to look at the bright side

You cannot hate everything about your job now, can you? So if you are stuck in a what to do when you hate your job situation, try and concentrate on what you do like about your job instead and mentally block the negatives out. Think about the future, you may hate your current job, but if it’s just a stepping stone that allows you to reach your career goals a few years down the line, sticking to it makes more sense, no?

7. Do not overshare your feelings

Frankly, no one wants a gripe at the office. If all you do is moan, groan, complain and whine – no colleague of yours is going to like you and those friends you made at work will soon disappear into thin air. Being a person who always dissed this and that all the time will further alienate you at a job you already dislike and make it unbearable. So put on that game face and work, till you have another option [7].

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So there you have it, if a job starts affecting your life in a bad way, maybe it is time to quit [8] But it is always good to have a good exit strategy beforehand, as in another job before you do up and leave. And till that time you can, well, grin and bear it and remember that this too shall pass!

Reference

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Last Updated on December 5, 2018

How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work

How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work

Being an efficient manager and a charismatic boss at the same time can seem like an impossible task. Is there a way to deliver the desired results for your business while remaining liked and respected by your staff?

We all know bad examples of team leaders who seem to fail at one aspect or the other, or even at both. But we’ve also heard of awesome managers who seem to juggle both things well enough.

How do they do it?

By sticking to few proven ways that let them maintain a positive karma score while remaining efficient. In this article, we’ll guide you through 11 smart management tips on how to lead a team and become something more than a boss – a leader.

1. Find a Management Strategy and Stick to It

There’s nothing worse than a boss that keeps changing his or her opinions and assignments depending on their mood or a book they read this week. Chaotic decisions increase the insecurity and frustration of your team, so you better find your strategy and stick to it.

If you do find some new methods you want your staff to follow, make sure they don’t contradict the general direction you are taking. Otherwise, you risk making your team take one step forward and two steps back.

2. Set Goals​ and Track Progress in Reaching Them

Set individual and collective goals​ for your team and track the progress in reaching them. This might sound obvious at first, but too often we find ourselves stuck between daily customer requests and monthly reports, and the bigger goal or vision seems to fade away.

According to Elon Musk (and many other successful CEOs around the Globe), it’s crucial to have a clear and motivating aim to where the company is heading. His aim for the space transportation company SpaceX is “to make humankind a multi-planetary species”.[1] That’s a huge goal but the company is slowly moving closer to it by reaching smaller steps and milestones, like launching self-landing rockets. This is also a very inspiring and meaningful goal that helps employees endure the company’s extremely high expectations and 60 to 70-hour work weeks.[2]

Even if your goals are not as grand, setting and reaching milestones will give you a clear insight into the team’s overall efficiency and daily progress. With time, you will be able to see the weak spots and improve your results.​

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3. Demand Learning from Your Team

CEO of print on demand startup Printful, Davis Siksnans, believes that:[3]

“The key for a company going through rapid growth is to empower your employees’ self-development.”

His company with 500 employees spanning two continents demands a culture of learning and provides all the tools necessary to do it.

Their idea is –  as the company scales, people have to grow in their positions too, which means that they have to be constantly learning. Siksnans says:

“We try to hire people for what they might become, but they need to have that drive.“

Alternatively, you can provide educational courses for your employees or invite informal lecturers to educate and inspire your team. You can also encourage peer-to-peer learning by asking employees to teach their particular experience or skill to co-workers.

4. Invest in a Pleasant Work Environment

Studies show that a well-designed office environment can increase your team’s overall performance by as much as 20%. You’ll be surprised to see that even very small interior tweaks that don’t require major investments can improve your workers’ performance.

Some ideas for a more productive and pleasing work environment:

  • Invest in modern furniture – offer ergonomic chairs, standing desks, and individually arranged workplaces​.
  • Start an in-house library – reading for pleasure just 30 minutes a day is proven to be enough to become more effective at work,[4] improve focus, and deal with problems like depression and anxiety.​
  • Play jazzy office music – rhythmic background music will help workers feel more energetic and enthusiastic while doing everyday tasks.​
  • Set up entertainment or break rooms – being able to relax and have fun at work creates a strong commitment, helps employees relax and clear their minds, and boosts productivity.​
  • Bring in uplifting office decor – it’s been found that art in the workplace can boost productivity,[5] lower stress, and even encourage employees to innovate.​
  • Decorate the office with live plants for freshness and a welcoming feel. Furthermore, plants are found to ensure better air quality and increase workers’ productivity by 15%.[6]

5. Be Kind and Sincere to Your Team

Did you know that 50% of employees quit because they dislike working with their manager?[7] In fact, most times when people leave their jobs they actually leave their managers. Being friendly and sincere may not be enough to be a successful manager, but it’s a big part of it.

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Some ways to show you appreciate and care for your staff:

  • Celebrate the progress and achievements of your employees. And don’t be shy to simply say thanks.​
  • Talk to your employees regularly and really listen to what they have to say. Address their concerns, help them reach their goals and do your best to improve their work and daily life.
  • If you’re having a bad day, don’t pour out your stress and anger on the staff. Instead, try to recharge yourself by appreciating the achievements of your team and setting the next goals.
  • Try not to overload your team with work. Every company has rush periods when it’s okay to have more work than usual. But remember that people cannot work under prolonged pressure and stress.
  • Don’t be selfish – it can be very demotivating to see that the manager only focuses on what you can do for him and doesn’t care about your goals and well-being.​ As the CEO of Xerox Anne M. Mulcahy put it,[8]

    “Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person — not just an employee — are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled.”

Whenever you are having doubts about your kind attitude, remember – satisfied employees are productive employees which lead to satisfied customers and eventually – success for your company.

6. Offer Flexible Work Hours

The traditional Monday to Friday, 9 to 5 job is beginning to slip away. Increasingly more people are working remotely or having flexible work hours, and we can expect this trend to continue. To adapt to these changing habits and remain competitive in the labor market, more employers are offering the chance to choose your own work hours, work from home or even from another city or country.

Offering flexible hours is a powerful way to inspire your existing staff and give them intrinsic motivation. Why not let your employees choose their preferred working hours while keeping the 8-hour day? For example, night owls are unhappy and unproductive if they have to come to work before 10 AM, while others might prefer to start at 7 and finish earlier.

You can go even farther and hire remote workers – this way you’ll be able to recruit from a global talent pool and even save money on office expenses like desks, stationery, electricity, etc.[9]

7. Track Your Team’s Productive Time

Not monitoring your employees’ progress and efficiency can result in poor performance and slacking. Instead of letting things go with the flow, you should consider installing time-tracking software on your employees’ computers and see who’s doing great and who might need a productivity boost.

But don’t get it wrong – there’s no need to become big brother and watch every step your employees take. If you use the time-tracker as a spying tool, you will only see increasing suspicion and insecurity around you, and your employees’ happiness levels will drop.

On the contrary, choose software that allows employees to mark private time that won’t be tracked. In addition, consider these time-management tactics:

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  • Allow flexible work hours. (see Tip No 6)
  • Encourage breaks – studies show that employees who take regular breaks are more productive than those who don’t.[10]
  • Enable remote work to show your employees that you trust them and that they can work from home or even from another country (if they can maintain sufficient productivity).
  • Consider offering bonuses to your most productive employees (those who show productivity levels above 90 or 95%).

8. Use Only Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism means offering valid and rational opinions about the work of others, involving both positive comments and remarks about what should be improved. Constructive criticism is usually expressed in a friendly manner rather than an oppositional one.

When you evaluate your team’s work, give them feedback that’s helpful, specific, and sincere. Don’t be shy to praise, but also be direct and even strict when necessary.

9. Don’t Give Special Treatment to Yourself

The boss’s actions are – directly or indirectly – observed by your team. This means that your employees look up to you and often mimic your attitude towards your work and the company – especially if your actions don’t show commitment. Nobody wants to work for a leader who doesn’t go all in or inspire motivation.

What you should do is lead by example. If you expect your employees to arrive at work on time and work 8 hours, do the same yourself. If you want them to show initiative, show it yourself and encourage others to do the same.

Jeff Weiner is the CEO of LinkedIn – a company of 3,000 employees that consistently ranks as one of the best workplaces with a 92 percent employee-approval rating.[11] Weiner’s workdays are reported to be equally long or even longer than those of his employees, allowing him to stay “extremely credible as a leader.”

10. Empower Your Employees

Here’s a common mistake many managers make:

They don’t motivate their staff and assume they simply love to work for their company.​ Such belief can result in painful losses for the company – especially these days when many companies are in desperate need of a reliable workforce.

Instead of directly thinking about bonuses and perks, consider intrinsic motivation. For example, enable flat organization in your team and listen to your employees’ ideas when they come up with opinions and suggestions. Your company might actually benefit a great deal from the feedback, and the unique ideas employees come up with.

You can also start an initiative where employees can freely share or pitch their business ideas to you or the founders of the company. If the idea is accepted by the management, the project can be developed, and the employee can have equity options.

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If people feel they have an impact in the company, they become more motivated, engaged and interested in the company’s growth.

11. Nurture Your Company Culture

Company culture is the personality of a company that defines the overall work environment and relationships between teammates. It also includes company mission, values, ethics, and goals.

Some examples of company cultures are the Horizontal corporate culture (collaborative and equal; popular among startups and free-spirited businesses) and Conventional corporate culture (a more risk-averse and hierarchy-based approach common in traditional companies).

However, you don’t have to stick to pre-existing boxes when creating your corporate culture. You might think of your team as a family, a sports team, or even a hippie camp if it fits your business and purpose. But keep in mind that by the time a company’s size reaches 20 employees, the company culture is set,[12] and any changes will need to be implemented in smaller teams.

Whichever personality you choose for your company, make sure to live by it and nurture it. Some things that might help:

Team building events, relevant books in your office library and proper on-boarding for the new employees to get everyone on the same page from the very beginning.

Be a Leader, Not a Boss

Using the words of Printful’s CEO Davis Siksnans, the ultimate goal is to “Hire great people who don’t have to be managed.”

However, when you do need to demonstrate some initiative and control, act as a leader rather than as a boss.

In other words, don’t be afraid to show the personality behind your role. And keep these 11 tips close to your heart.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

Reference

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