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About Your Job, Psychology

Find Something That Really Switches You On

Leaning towards my last post, I couldn’t agree more with Microsoft’s head honcho Steve Balmer. During the day the Dutch television program ‘NOVA’ had with him, he mentioned something we all should remember throughout our lives and certainly throughout our careers.

The simple line I am referring to is “Find something that really switches you on!!!” and he couldn’t be more correct. By the way, should you wonder about the exclamation marks following the sentence, keep this in mind – quite a convincing, yet awkward seminar for somebody as high up the corporate ladder as he is, but that might be another post’s topic…

Back to “Find something that really switches you on!!!“. When talking to friends, family and colleagues I am sometimes amazed at how a lot of individuals are doing things literally “just for the money”. They keep their jobs which they are not completely happy in, because that is what they have been hired to do. They remain there for years or even decades and they hardly feel fulfilled by their respective jobs. When you ask why they stay there, the common answers are “for the money” or “what else can I do?”. Yes, you do need money indeed, and as for the latter part, it really is up to you, since our educational and professional system does not point it for you. Again, you need to “find something that really switches you on” by looking at what indeed does switch you on. Which experiences in life were the most pleasant? Which tasks do you enjoy doing for hours on end? What is it that makes you lose your sense of time? You can go as far back as you want to find these items. Go back to your childhood or adolescence and repeatedly ask yourself the question. Chances are that, after a few months, you’ll get to know these things you enjoy and when you do, you’ll just have to find the job type to match it and start sending off your resumés to close fits.

So, next time I ask the question, I expect to hear “because it switches me on“.

Steve Balmer over Strategisch HRM, over Commitment



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