Jun 3, 2005

What do you look for in a career?

"Aapki naukri mein na izzat hai, na mazaa hai aur na matlab (Your job has neither respect nor fun nor meaning)," - Bunty in the film Bunty aur Babli

So when did Bollywood filmmakers like Yash Chopra become career experts. Rashmi Bansal thinks that the quote from the movie above captures the essence of what people look for in a job and career.

Respect (the kind of job should evoke external and internal respect) is an intrinsic part of the job. Lots of careers come with external respect, while others do not. Rashmi covers external respect, but I would add a respect one has for one's job goes a long way to "make meaning" for oneself.

So as an employer, if you think people do not respect the job your employees do, what are you going to do about it? And what are you going to do that will make sense, which is a precursor to your employees evoking respect for the job.

Fun. Fun can be superficial or inbuilt. Fun can be linked to the task or the environment. What are you doing as a manager/employer to add to the daily zing that makes employees want to come to work? Are you building a community of employees by giving them time and space to "chill out" and "hang out" with each other? Do you organize events that make people loosen up and laugh?

Meaning. This is the least you can do as a manager/employer. Meaning is very individual to a person. It is tied up with one's inner desires and motivation. It might be pointed to by educational qualifications, but maybe not. It is the part that people compromise most when starting their careers and ends up after a couple of decades as the reason for the mid-life crisis. At the most what you can do is assess the needs of a person and hope he/she is in a job that makes most meaning to him/her.