Work and a job are two different things. A job isn’t necessarily pleasant. At best, it pays the bills, but it has no meaning beyond the paycheck. At worst, it crushes and stifles the spirit. Work sometimes isn’t pleasant, either, but it has a perpetual joy to it. It is not the four-letter word some make it. Work is not to be dreaded; it should be something one enjoys doing. It should provide direction and engender passion.
A job can break the heart. It can cause an employee to weep as she or he heads to work and to weep again as he or she goes home from work. It can produce fear: the fear of being fired for no reason, the fear of the company not caring when the employee is experiencing a difficulty, the fear of being laid off because the company has not made the strides in the marketplace that it should. A job can result in jokes about pink slips. It can produce meetings behind closed doors and closed communication, that is, code words that mean another employee has been let go.
Work is not like a job. Work should not instill fear unless the person employed isn’t working. Work should have an element of fun to it. It should bring a smile to one’s face. It should provide satisfaction. It should provide employees with opportunities to be creative and to feel and be successful. The work should be an anchor for the employee. When that employee feels overwhelmed, the work steadies him or her. The person is reminded of why he or she works, and it usually isn’t for a paycheck or for some self-centered motive. No, the work itself takes preeminence. The people touched by that work become the priority. The employee remembers those things and continues forward with the work, trusting and believing in it.
Photo: Viktor Hertz (CC BY NC SA 2.0)