No job is perfect

Liz doesn’t spend time reflecting on what she wants for her career because she’s busy working, which she enjoys most of the time, with people she likes, most of the time, and raising her family… her top priority.

When I asked how she’s doing with her values syncing with her company’s values, she became uncomfortable because, she said, when she thinks about that she gets the feeling she should find another job.

Liz is pleased with her role in the company, most of the time. She chooses the battles she thinks require her to voice her opinion counter to what leadership wants to hear. She could not live with herself if she never spoke up when she doesn’t agree with a direction or decision. She believes that is what she is paid to do. But, some at the top have made it clear they prefer everyone to agree, so she swallows hard when she has to live with results she views as wrong or unethical, rationalizing the company’s position to herself. She learns from each experience and thinks about how she’ll approach something like it in the future.

We agreed now is not the time for her to leave because she’s OK with her role for the most part, and the schedule and benefits work well for her family. Plus, she believes no company will be perfect, although she sometimes wonders what it would be like to work for a company whose values are truly in sync with her own.

I encouraged her to identify what is most important to her for future roles. Not the job itself, but the company values that would be evident, the work environment she prefers, the people who would make her role an invigorating experience. And, picturing herself years from now looking back on her career, what will make her feel good about what she has accomplished?

No job is perfect. We all know that. But, it is important to assess the toll your current role is having on you, your health and your wellbeing, and the impact on your loved ones.

It’s a worthwhile exercise to outline what you enjoy doing, what you’re good at, what you’re grateful for, and what you’d like in your future. When you know that, and picture yourself thriving in that kind of environment, you’ll be able to easily articulate it. And, most important, you’ll know when the right opportunity presents itself down the road. I’ve seen it happen.

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