Do you like what you do? If not, how do you cope?

Changing the job has always been hugely beneficial for me. You get a much wider skillset, learn so much from dealing with different kinds of people (even in the same industry), get a clean slate (making you more confident and thus better at your job) and more than likely better pay, as well. When in doubt, reboot! Of course I've been in the lucky situation of not having to look for a new position, they've been offered to me.

TheArtOfScience wrote:
Wait.

You can make money writing?

WHY WAS I NOT TOLD OF THIS?


No, you can't. Not really.

I like my job as it lets me work with all sorts of backward hardware and completely stupid software. I have been at it for about 5 years now and I'm feeling ready to ramble on. Like Shoal I tend to get bored of my jobs and then jump. Currently I think I'm going to jump to a different job, I'm going to be the man this time! I'm getting a business plan together and I will see if I can not get into the business of working for myself. I think flip flops will be a required part of the uniform.

I really want to open a LAN Center but if the numbers do not crunch the way I think they will I might follow my pop and get into the fast food business. It will be a lot of work at first but after I get about 3-4 stores going I should be living the high on the hog.

To control my boredom I secretly visit some websites and post stuff that is devoid of grammar, spelling and sentence structure to see how many people I can offend!

God bless America!

I haven't figured out if I dislike my job because of the work or because I work from home.

Most of my work isn't very intellectually stimulating. There's only so many press releases, case studies, white papers, etc. you can write until it becomes a soul-sucking grind.

There are aspects of my job that I like, but the way my company is set up makes it *extremely* frustrating. Because our company was built by acquisition, our employees are *extremely* geographically disbursed, with many people working from home. Getting agreement on product development strategies and positioning is a royal pain in the pituty when everything is done via conference calls. What could be done in 30 minutes in front of a white board takes four hour-long conference calls, three PPTs, and, even then, there's always someone who walks away with a completely different take on what we all just agreed to.

Working from home also gets old. Conference calls and IM doesn't make up for casual chats around the water cooler.

That being said, I have a decent job that pays well in a recession.

Clemenstation wrote:
I have an office job but I don't really get that sense of drudgery. For starters, I get to spend more than a fair share of my time trolling message boards. :)

Amen brother!

I've been here, at the same office, for 27 years. I have an MBA that the office paid for. I make good money and I leave my troubles here at 4:30 every afternoon. No unpaid mandatory over time, no pager, no real pressure. I like the folks I work with and we've all been here together for a million years. Do I wish I could be doing something else that's more exciting? Sure, but be careful what you wish for, you might just get it.

My wife, on the other hand, hates her job. She's a customer service rep for the utility company and nobody calls to say how happy they are. They all have something to bitch about and she has to be pleasant and courteous to each and every unreasonable, pissed-off asshat who calls. She counts the days to retirement and won't work a day past it.

Bruce Springsteen wrote:
I've done my best to live the right way. I get up every morning and go to work each day. But, your eyes go blind and your blood runs cold. Sometimes I feel so weak I just want to explode. Explode and tear this whole town apart. Take a knife and cut this pain from my heart. Find somebody itching for something to start.

O.K.
You win, Boss. You win.

Shoal07 wrote:
I learned from the military to move around in your job about every 2 years. I stay in the same field (usually), and mostly with the same company (5 yrs with the 1st, 5 yrs with the 2nd, about to move to the third soon, hopefully). This helps me keep things fresh and interesting because each position has its ups, downs, and challenges (good and bad). If I stayed in the same job position for 10 years I'd go insane. They say you've learned everything your going to learn from most job positions in 2 years anyway. After that it's just repitition.

Also, I always move for something just a bit better. Not always a payraise, but maybe another little resume bullet or that step towards the "next level" in my professional growth. At the core, I like my profession. You have to like your profession, or its time to get a new one. After 2 years I am usually bored with the tasks a certain position has, and I need something new to do. I may also be sick of my boss or coworkers (or they might be sick of me).

The move around every two years concept was something else the military really seems to just have gotten right, whether by design or luck (likely the latter).

While the military gets a lot of things right by luck, this one is by design, doubly so in the case of officers. Changes in assignment are driven purely on reasons of broadening horizons and enhancing professional development. In fact, for enlisted your chances of making it to the top 3% of the USAF enlisted are greatly enhanced by time spent OUT of your primary careerfield. Things like 1st Sgt duty, MTI, MTL, and even retraining are looked at as a great boon to any Senior NCO. For officers, it's mostly done with changing your job every couple of years via PCS and the occasional PCA.

Acronym list:

MTI - Military Training Instructor
MTL - Military Training Leader
PCS - Permanent Change of Station
PCA - Permanent Change of Assignment
NCO - Non-Commissioned Officer

Pharacon wrote:
I like my job as it lets me work with all sorts of backward hardware and completely stupid software. I have been at it for about 5 years now and I'm feeling ready to ramble on. Like Shoal I tend to get bored of my jobs and then jump. Currently I think I'm going to jump to a different job, I'm going to be the man this time! I'm getting a business plan together and I will see if I can not get into the business of working for myself. I think flip flops will be a required part of the uniform.

I really want to open a LAN Center but if the numbers do not crunch the way I think they will I might follow my pop and get into the fast food business. It will be a lot of work at first but after I get about 3-4 stores going I should be living the high on the hog.

To control my boredom I secretly visit some websites and post stuff that is devoid of grammar, spelling and sentence structure to see how many people I can offend!

God bless America!

I actually was pretty serious about starting a LAN a few years back. In my area, it was a total no go once we crunched the numbers. I too have started dreaming about my own business. I would love to start up my own restaurant like my folks have done, but I do know that the amount of work involved is probably 3 times what I do currently, not to mention the risk. It would however be great to be behind a grill and just nail a dinner rush, get a ton of great food out to a packed house in my own place. Maybe one day I will, but for now I will stick with my safe cube monkey job.

OG_slinger wrote:
I haven't figured out if I dislike my job because of the work or because I work from home.

Most of my work isn't very intellectually stimulating. There's only so many press releases, case studies, white papers, etc. you can write until it becomes a soul-sucking grind.

There are aspects of my job that I like, but the way my company is set up makes it *extremely* frustrating. Because our company was built by acquisition, our employees are *extremely* geographically disbursed, with many people working from home. Getting agreement on product development strategies and positioning is a royal pain in the pituty when everything is done via conference calls. What could be done in 30 minutes in front of a white board takes four hour-long conference calls, three PPTs, and, even then, there's always someone who walks away with a completely different take on what we all just agreed to.

Working from home also gets old. Conference calls and IM doesn't make up for casual chats around the water cooler.

That being said, I have a decent job that pays well in a recession.

I absolutely love my job, except when I have to fix/update/replace someone's computer that's multiple states away. Also meetings with east coast people who insist on doing it during my lunch irks me. I have to repeat though - I love my job!

I'm new here so take this for what you will:

If you are truly unhappy at your job, you need to change it. Please. Don't be attached to your job by "golden handcuffs" (ie: The pay is good enough to keep me here but I'm dying inside).

I worked in a jail for 4.25 years. It was awful. But the pay was great, considering that it's essentially unskilled labor - they take you in off the streets and teach you everything, no previous experience required. And it's a nice jail, as jails go. And I worked with pretty cool people. But you rarely work with people, you just sit in a pod with 40-90 drug dealers, gang members, and drunks. All day I handed out toilet paper, yelled at people for having their feet up or their shirts untucked, and watched them eat disgusting food. By the end of my "tour", I was so angry all the time I was pretty much ready to go off at the drop of a hat.

I took a $20K/year paycut to come to my new job. I work as a campus cop - it's a much, much smaller agency and we don't always get a lot of respect. But I'm 100% happier doing it, and even though paying the bills and being super disciplined about money has been a stressful for my wife and I, it has been worth it because I felt like a huge pressure valve opened the day I walked out of the jail and never had to go back.

If you've always had a realistic "I wish I could..." scenario, look into it. I'm not talking, "I want to be a professional Powerball Winner" or "I want to be a professional hot-chick-Jello-wrestler". But if you've had a career you were always interested in and would enjoy, see what it takes. For me it has been worth the trade offs to not hate living. When the OP described the alarm clock going off, and just sitting there listening to it blare, it gave me cold chills remembering how much I hated my old job.

InspectorFowler wrote:
I'm not talking, "I want to be a professional Powerball Winner" or "I want to be a professional hot-chick-Jello-wrestler".

Are you trying to persuade hot chicks not to wrestle in Jello?

Around here people have a little song they sing when things aren't going just right. It goes:

I love my jooooob
And the people I work with!

It's best to be staring at nothing about five degrees off the horizontal, so as to best communicate that the next coworker that gives you sh*t might just leave with office supplies up their ass.

But I'm leaving the hive at the end of the month to start teaching. Kind of like Sommermatt, but happier.

TheArtOfScience wrote:
Wait.

You can make money writing?

WHY WAS I NOT TOLD OF THIS?

If the fans of your antics in this thread are any indication, you might have something there ; )
Seriously, though. If you wrote your autobiography now, I'd buy it for the lulz.

IMAGE(http://img190.imageshack.us/img190/6301/copes.jpg)

Today is the most I have hated my job in the past 5 years. I have grown weary of being dependent upon a place that does not care for me at all. I am just an emotionless robot that has to do what he is told, or be dismantled. Right now, losing everything I have looks better than continuing to maintain this job.

I'm lost and I don't know what to do. Help!?

Decide on what you want to be when you grow up. Then take concrete steps to pursue that dream while working at your current job at the same time. It'll suck for a long while, and you will wonder why anyone thought it's fair that the day only has 24 hours, but it'll pay off, eventually.

Actually, the hard part is deciding what you really want to do, day in, day out, 24/7. For me, it's hospital work. I can do my gig 24/7/365 and I'd be perfectly happy.

That's also what is so stressful/depressing. I know what I want to do. I went to school and have a degree in the field. I can't get a job. I have applied about 15 times now and I can't even get an interview.

Start over?

My dream growing up was to make games. Because there were no college programs that taught that in my city I gave up on that and I thought the next best thing would be to own my own video games store.

I worked all throughout my college and university years in 2 independent stores and it became abundantly clear after only a couple years that:

1- It requires a tremendous amount of money to startup but also to keep going.
2- Videogames and ALL they encompass (consoles, accessories, etc.) do not have a sufficient markup to be a viable business. The worst part is the super quick price drops that distributors don't protect you from.
3- The videogame buying public is generally an ungrateful, cheap lot that has no sense of customer loyalty
4- Digital delivery is going to kill the brick n mortar sooner than later

Now my third dream job would be to own a record store but I don't think any explanations are necessary for this one

EverythingsTentative wrote:
That's also what is so stressful/depressing. I know what I want to do. I went to school and have a degree in the field. I can't get a job. I have applied about 15 times now and I can't even get an interview.

Just to give you something to compare to, maybe get some perspective, how my life's played out: I have a college degree in creative and communication management type duties (2001). I had to apply for a year (several applications a week, typically at least one per day) to get into my field (marketing/corporate communication). Then I had to work for three years in entry-level duties and change jobs to get into a basic level job at what I was supposed to do. All of that took just determination and budget management - it's not exactly fun to be out of a job for a year.

All this time I knew I had to make games. Because I couldn't see a way into games, I just made games on my own as best as I could. I let everyone I knew know that games is what it was going to be, once the opportunity presented itself. It took five years of, I guess faith, to happen. And even when the way presented itself, I was initially turned down and had to keep at it (practicing my skills, demonstrating passion for it, applying) for another year before I finally did get in.

I've been in games for five years now, and can't imagine doing anything else in life. But it was only possible thanks to never stopping believing in it and working towards it. For me, it feels like talking about what you want to do helps. You never know who's listening, and it keeps you honest.

Oh and also, not getting a reply? I'm ashamed to say I'm the guy who's supposed to reply to all the applications at my company. I don't, or rather it can take weeks to months. We get so many. On the bright side, if you're actually any good at what you do - over 90% of the applications don't warrant even a second's consideration.

InspectorFowler wrote:
I'm new here so take this for what you will:

But you rarely work with people, you just sit in a pod with 40-90 drug dealers, gang members, and drunks. All day I handed out toilet paper, yelled at people for having their feet up or their shirts untucked, and watched them eat disgusting food. By the end of my "tour", I was so angry all the time I was pretty much ready to go off at the drop of a hat.

I've been subbing in middle schools for two years waiting for a full time position to open up for me in any district within 50 miles of where I live (dozens of apps, no interviews)... and this sounds a lot like what I've been doing.

I don't always leave school enraged, but I'd say there's a "venting" portion of my day after every job. Mostly because there's only so much disrespect, breaking up of fights, and lawyering you can take in a classroom in any given day before you need an outlet. And I never lose my temper with the kids... so zombies and daily quests in wow it became...

EverythingsTentative wrote:
That's also what is so stressful/depressing. I know what I want to do. I went to school and have a degree in the field. I can't get a job. I have applied about 15 times now and I can't even get an interview.

Start over?

What is it you do? Some of us might have helpful contacts.

I have a degree in Administration of Justice. I want to work as a Crime Scene Tech or with a Medical Examiner.

I've been applying to these jobs for the past five years, in the Atlanta area. Every time a position becomes available, I apply. I stated 15 times but it's more than that. Bitterness is beginning to set in.

EverythingsTentative wrote:
I have a degree in Administration of Justice. I want to work as a Crime Scene Tech or with a Medical Examiner.

I've been applying to these jobs for the past five years, in the Atlanta area. Every time a position becomes available, I apply. I stated 15 times but it's more than that. Bitterness is beginning to set in.

Blame too many people watching CSI and flooding the market. Seriously though, do you have experience in either of the two jobs outside your degree? Those are both jobs with a heavy technical component. I'm extrapolating a little bit from other types of lab tech, but generally even technical degrees in the field woefully underprepare people to actually do the job on a day-to-day basis. As a result we'll generally only hire people with a fair bit of experience, or at the very least that we've taught ourselves (it also doesn't help that it's virtually impossible to fire public servants in Australia).

This does tend to create a bit of a catch-22 with getting into the market. One common path is that people without experience will be hired on <6 month temporary contracts for positions that don't need to be formally advertised given their temporary nature, which then gives both the employer and employee time to assess how good a fit it is, and then makes it much easier to apply for the advertised permanent positions since you've then got real experience. The temporary thing isn't great, but in practice the conversion rate to permanent positions is very high. Conditions may or may not be similar in your country/field though.

What you may need to do is contact the people who normally advertise the positions you've been applying for and enquire about the possibility of temporary positions, or even just advice on entry into the fields. On a related note, have you gotten any feedback on why your applications weren't successful?

The only thing I can surmise is that, like you said, I don't have any experience, other than my degree. The positions I have applied to are the entry level positions, yet they still require 2 years of experience and only a high school education. Like you said catch-22, how am I going to get experience if no one hires me to begin with.

I've made phone calls and spoke with people in IA/HR. I get the same thing every time, "We are going through applications and will contact you if you meet our needs".'

I thing I agree with you on the CSI thing. Personally, I've never seen an episode of CSI.

Give them an offer they can't refuse - free internship. It's radical, but if you have no other choice...

EverythingsTentative wrote:
The only thing I can surmise is that, like you said, I don't have any experience, other than my degree. The positions I have applied to are the entry level positions, yet they still require 2 years of experience and only a high school education

I could probably write a several thousand word rant about my frustration with the way that the relationship between degrees/diplomas and these types of jobs have changed, but I'll spare everyone that. In reality, most of these jobs really don't require much of the academic information that gets covered in degrees (case in point, my current job has essentially nothing in common with my undergrad degree other than being vaguely biology-y). Experience is much more valuable.

EverythingsTentative wrote:
I've made phone calls and spoke with people in IA/HR. I get the same thing every time, "We are going through applications and will contact you if you meet our needs".

See, in my experience HR will be at best competently ignorant about the sort of info you need. They handle the paperwork, but generally have very little to do with the actual hiring. You need to talk to managers within the specific area(s) that you're interested in.

EverythingsTentative wrote:
Like you said catch-22, how am I going to get experience if no one hires me to begin with.

LarryC wrote:
Give them an offer they can't refuse - free internship. It's radical, but if you have no other choice...

Larry's suggestion is a good one, or as I mentioned you could try and wangle a temporary, unadvertised position - there will often be a few floating around due to backfilling maternity leave and that kind of thing. My first paid lab job only came after having done two 3-month unpaid internship things (one of them with the organisation I went on to work for) and a year of research in honours. My first job in my current organisation was an unadvertised 6 month temporary contract despite by that point having about 6 years of lab experience including a PhD. And realistically, if I'd gone through the formal process at that point I'd have struggled due to lack of experience in that specific field - but once I went for an advertised job towards the end of that 6 months, I had a much easier time with it.

The way I saw it, the Catch-22 really wasn't one. It was simply hinting to an unlisted option - temp or unpaid internship. It can't be throwaway work, either. If this is the field you really want to work in, the enthusiasm for the work itself must be there, and the work you do must be impeccable. At the very least, you'll get a referral and your two years of experience. At best, you'll wow them so much they'll be scrambling for the funds to lock you down as an employee right away.

These are the things which have helped me get around:

Genuine, overflowing enthusiasm for the job. Should be easy if you love it. Make it really obvious.

Reputation for excellence. Good enough isn't good enough. Best foot forward and all that.

Social skill. You're your own PR firm until you can hire one. Brush up on building influence, face value, and networking.

Adaptability. You must be open to learning new things from your employer and see to it that they get what they want. The customer is always right.

LarryC wrote:
The way I saw it, the Catch-22 really wasn't one. It was simply hinting to an unlisted option - temp or unpaid internship. It can't be throwaway work, either. If this is the field you really want to work in, the enthusiasm for the work itself must be there, and the work you do must be impeccable. At the very least, you'll get a referral and your two years of experience. At best, you'll wow them so much they'll be scrambling for the funds to lock you down as an employee right away.

These are the things which have helped me get around:

Genuine, overflowing enthusiasm for the job. Should be easy if you love it. Make it really obvious.

Reputation for excellence. Good enough isn't good enough. Best foot forward and all that.

Social skill. You're your own PR firm until you can hire one. Brush up on building influence, face value, and networking.

Adaptability. You must be open to learning new things from your employer and see to it that they get what they want. The customer is always right.

It's all solid advice. Of course, if the job is really the right fit for you, most of this should happen organically.

I noted these because they didn't come all that naturally to me. While I was really happy with the job I was doing, I had to make an effort to make my enthusiasm a little more obvious to the bosses. Selling yourself at work and doing some unpleasant chores (the HR crap and event participation obligations were particularly annoying for me) with a minimum of fuss and a smile took a great deal of teeth gritting. Filling up HR forms still gets my goat.

There's also usually some work thrown into the job description that nobody likes to do (like firing people). Responding gracefully to inserts and impromptu requests on the job without being a doormat took me years to develop.

Totally worth it, though. Sometimes, I get the feeling that my vacation is work and my work is vacation!

Maybe you should ask yourself if you're ready to move to land a position. I'm just thinking that if the jobs are really sparse, that may be your only option to get the experience to be able to choose where you want to work.

The unpaid practice term is something we've done a number of times (artists, mostly), even when not hiring. A large number of those do convert to permanent positions. I do realize it may not be an option for everyone.

Can't really think of other advice, given the specifics. Crime scene tech isn't exactly something you could demonstrate a passion for and excellence in outside of the actual job.

What I find extremely difficult is, ass kissing and that is the only thing that gets you anywhere, where I currently work. Which is one of the reasons I am still so mad. Hard work means nothing if you don't end every day with a brown nose.

The job I currently do isn't bad and it can be rewarding. The people that walk all over me, lie to me, betray me, are the problem. These people are also the people in charge.

I think I am going to contact the managers at the places I had applied, and see what I can do. Even if that something is just establishing a relationship, which sounds like a no brainer.

Thanks, a little encouragement and words of advice really go a long way. I'm in debt to you all.