Re: ANON: job dissatisfaction

Subject: Re: ANON: job dissatisfaction
From: Jill Burgchardt <jburgcha -at- PESTILENCE -dot- ITC -dot- NRCS -dot- USDA -dot- GOV>
Date: Wed, 2 Dec 1998 08:32:42 -0700

Don't leave your job for another one or contracting until you do some
serious self-examination and figure out what the real problem is. I
can create several different theories based on your post, maybe
you'll recognize yourself in one of them.

Theory 1: You're too passive. Your post seems devoid of interpersonal
stuff. Other than complaining to your boss, there's little indication
that you're even interacting with others. This is a job that requires
interaction. Information gathering, analysis, brainstorming, pitching
proposals for new tasks, are all interactive processes. Don't wait
for people to bring these discussions to you. If you don't show
initiative, your work isn't likely to include any more than they'd
give to a junior secretary. If this sounds familiar, work on
communication skills and your job is likely to grow.

Theory 2: You're actively chasing off meaningful work. You seem to
think that there's nothing to learn from these jobs. Could it be that
you're projecting an "I know it all, you can't teach me anything"
attitude to your coworkers? Are you hypercritical? If so, why should
anyone try to teach you anything? Or give you a project that you'll
tactlessly shred after they've put blood, sweat and tears into it?
You don't seem to value or respect the work being done at any of
these companies and that must certainly be obvious. Again, work on
communication skills.

Theory 3: Your interest area is too narrow (writing only) to adapt to
the variety found in most technical writing positions. Almost any job
has the potential to teach and encourage professional growth. For me,
learning and growing in a job are what make it rewarding. The
specific skill used--writing, producing javascript, analyzing, is
secondary. If your only interest is writing, perhaps you're in the
wrong job altogether. Maybe you should be a fiction writer or article

The next two theories have been discussed at length, so I'll just
list them:

Theory 4: You don't know what you want.

Theory 5: You need a reality check.

Re: Suggestions to be a contractor. I'm not a contractor, but the
thought of working with a contractor who couldn't get the big picture
or accept less interesting work at two or three other jobs is scary.
Contracting seems like a run-away-from-the-problem solution, not a
long-term solution.

Figure out the problem first.

Jill Burgchardt
jburgcha -at- pestilence -dot- itc -dot- nrcs -dot- usda -dot- gov

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