Over the last 15 years I moved 5 cities. How many did you ?
Employees, are mercenaries. They would do anything for their careers. The only difference between you and an ISIS fighter, in Syria, is that, you, operate with different tools (laptop vs machine guns). Surprised ?
You just took the red pill. An ISIS fighter works for money. He switches side if someone pay him more. His insurance is great. So is yours. Like you he claims to work for a vision of the company and like you he doesn’t believe for the most part, believe in it himself. Its just the best paying job for him in his vicinity and his skills. So he takes it. I am sure most readers would be aghast at the very notion of comparing themselves to some organisation as abhorrent as ISIS. However this jolt was necessary for our topic of the day.
I have worked in several fortune 500 organisations, for several year, and boy, I am a passionate guy when it comes to my beliefs’. I loved my job initially, and being in HR, I had to believe in the vision of the company, because, my job involved, bull-shitting the new joiners with a twinkle in their eye. It was called an Induction program. Both, they and I never believed in the vision, but neither of us spoke about, it anyways. I soldiered on like a stoic, being an affable person, interacting with every employee, believing in the vision. And then it happened, I switched. Yes, a new job a new company and new vision. Not very different from the previous, on but nevertheless, a different one. And then I switched again, and again and again. I switched jobs every 3 to 4 years for career advancement reason and every time I thought things with different, it remained the same. My salary increase my tile changed but my role more or less remained the same. I am you. Yes. you are no different either. If you haven’t switched ever then you are not worth your while. If you haven’t switched then you cannot sell yourself and you are doomed to your own organisation. If you have stayed in a job for over ten years then chances are that you are looked down upon, unless you are CEO of that company, which ofcourse you are not, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this article.
Now you might have had a different journey, but I can bet my last dollar, that its not very different. Today, unlike in the past, the average lifetime of a employee in a job is less than 12 months ! People switch all the time. The switch culture is like fashion, a new dress comes in town and you switch. I saw the dot.com bust, the Lehman crash and I lived through some of the toughest of the times of economic nosediving. And like you did, I stoped trusting in future. For me it had to be “right now”. While Epicureanism is a great way of coping with the “uncertainty”, yet it drains us out at the end and leaves us as depressed, souls. We manage to keep sane through corporate quick fixes like Outbound events which is drinking, smoking for the most part. We also try out hand at relationships even spirituality. Yoga center’s within offices are the new norm. Yet none these seems to work, because our fundamental strategy, is flawed.
Today, we are living in a era of plenty. And job’s are no exception. Your dad never had that choice, yet he was as happy as he was. You have a choice of life like never before but yet you are unhappy, as ever before.
You know why ?
Because, you like me, have gotten used to the switch. Warren buffet never moved out of his home town in omaha, Nebraska. He lived in the same house for 50+ years. He famously said that “ Take a job that, you would do for free, anyways”. Ask that question to yourself. Would you do your job for Free ?
You think it would one day, but, that’s delusional thinking at best. You are going, to do the same thing in a different place for more money. Switch gives you choice and Trust me, you don’t want choice in todays’ world. Because, life is short and you don’t want to choose, everyday, month, year. Have to tried to switch mobile phones ? If you have you would know what I mean.What it really means is that you have to reduce your choices — consciously. Life is gonna bombard you with a several choices daily, and its only gonna increase. Its called Maya. Yet, you have to do the opposite of that to stay focused.
When, Buddha was meditating, Mara the demon assaulted Gautama Buddha beneath the bodhi tree, using violence, sensory pleasure and mockery in an attempt to prevent the Buddha from attaining enlightenment. We might not want to attain salvation, like Buddha, but, we still have to prevent ourselves from getting wasted.
People, get into relationship (marriage) and then move on. They never reconstruct the cost of movement. It causes a lot of residual memory loss. And its never the same. Yet, you are advised to move on. Well, I don’t suggest staying in a dead end marriage. But moving on, at the drop of hat ?
Today’s world is a world of facebook, twitter, instagram. You might thing you can remain calm in the storm of social media, but that’s almost impossible. You have to get off the grid to do it.
So if you want to stay sane, find that one job which will keep you happy while you are doing it. Find that one thing which you like to do and do it for the rest of your life. Let the world fall apart. Let heavens fall. You should remain calm and focused.
Also, make your systems resilient. Your wakeup time, sleep time, you exercise time, your food time. These are things which will take you too age 80 and beyond. Keep them protected at all cost. Don’t let any work or any passion take that away from you. It might not sound sexy in today’s era because everyone wants to be a billionaire by 40. But, what use is your billions if you body has given up on you by then. You cannot resurrect it in any form of manner, even if yo wanted to. The damage has been done for good…
Trust me my friends, don’t quit that job, but stay put and find you happiness in that little hole of yours. Innovation can happen anywhere.