Reblog NY Times – Steps in the Search for Rewarding Work

November 15th, 2008

I love my work.  It can be stressful, demanding and sometimes the nuts and bolts overwhelm the feeling that I make a difference.  This article from today’s New York Times is a good reminder of what to focus on during the tough times.  Here are a couple of good quotes:

“We found that people working in very challenging professions or settings who were technically excellent might find their work difficult unless it was also important to their mission in life,” Mr. Gardner said. An unexpected finding was that joy was a crucial ingredient of good work. Mr. Gardner said: “Take teachers in American inner cities. They may be good technically and feel deeply about their responsibility to their students. But if they don’t find joy in their work, they burn out; it’s just too hard. You have to build into hard jobs like that supports and rewards, so that what was initially meaningful and engaging will continue to be so.”

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There are, Mr. Gardner said, three questions people can ask about their jobs to evaluate their good-work level: Does it fit your values? Does it evoke excellence; are you highly competent and effective at what you do? Does it bring you that subjective barometer of engagement, joy?

Preoccupations – Steps in the Search for Rewarding Work – NYTimes.com

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