Thursday, December 20, 2007

Be a good employee

Or, how I can maintain some semblance of good humanity in my job search.

Have you ever thought about what you're actually trying to accomplish at work? Besides getting a paycheck, making your boss happy, making your clients/customers happy, etc. I used to work for a company in a particularly soulless industry. Our goals were plain: create situations where our undeserving clients could make even more money than they already have. We helped no one and did no good in the process. It was disgusting.

Besides my more pressing needs, like eating, getting laid, and not getting evicted, I really, really, really don't want to work for the same kind of clients again. I just need to know that my 40 hours (more like 50-60 if I'm honest) are contributing to something that matters to me. It's a little Gen Y, I know, but I can't help it if everyone has spent my whole life telling me that I'm special and that I should do what makes me happy.

Luckily my skillset is easily transferable to the non-profit sector. I'm also lucky to live in NYC, where tons NPs have corporate offices. Everyone says that NPs don't pay very much, but not very much > nothing! Also, I'm willing to sacrifice a few thousand in take-home pay if it means that I'm making a real difference blah blah blah bleeding heart, etc.

For the past 6 months, I've felt tremendously hypocritical. I try to be a good human and think of new ways to do so, but only on my own time. Then I go and spend like 11 hours every day getting paid to do just the opposite. It was getting hard to reconcile the two halves of my life into something I didn't hate. Does that make me naive? Over-idealistic? Probably. But honestly, there are enough people out there who are only concerned with getting paid. I don't need to be one of them.

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Michael T said...

Good thoughts. Good luck.

Anonymous said...

Great article, I agree with every single word. Especially now, when I run my own company, I try to make my employees happy, providing them the best working conditions I possibly can. That includes having a reliable software for them to work with - thanks to anegis consulting.