CareerWork-life balance

Job Crafting

Are you one of the 54% of American workers who are satisfied with your job or one of the 46% who are not? What could increase your happiness at work?

If you are unsatisfied at work you basically have two choices. You can try to find a new job that will satisfy you and maybe it will or maybe it won’t. You can never be sure.

The other option is to change the job you have to make satisfying to you. That is called Job Crafting – when you change or redefine your job to incorporate your strengths and passions.

Amy Wrzesniewski, Justin M. Berg, and Jane E. Dutton did a lot of research into job crafting. The premise is pretty simple. Any job is a collection of tasks and relationships. Usually it is the boss who chooses the tasks and relationships that make up your job. In job crafting, you try to influence the tasks and relationships that make up your job.

Of course, there are two potential problems with this. The first is that you know what you want. The clue to this can be found in the definition of job crafting – your strengths and passions. Have you done a strengths inventory like the VIA? It is free and takes 15 minutes and it can really help you to understand yourself. Have you thought about your passions lately? Have you completed a passions survey?

If the first obstacle is knowing what you want, the second obstacle may be much easier to overcome. The second obstacle is getting your boss to agree. But if you walk in to your boss having done research on job crafting and being able to show him or her your strengths and passions surveys you could easily make the case that you would be worth more with new responsibilities compared to your old job. If you show the value in your proposal you have much better chance of getting to “Yes”. It would truly be win/win.

Next step? Take those surveys, give it a lot of thought, hire a coach if you think it will help and go craft your job!

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