Why do you do what you do for a living? and ..why it matters!

Why do you do what you do – for a living?  What’s the point of reflecting upon this? Read on!

Let’s consider a continuum of related scenarios….Some people drift into certain fields and then wake up decades later asking themselves the above question and not finding a satisfactory answer. They may be “happy” enough with their job and role or they may feel they are simply treading water to pay the mortgage. At worst they feel trapped, hate their job and find the whole work arena stressful and unfulfilling.

Some people, on the other hand, are fortunate to be able to answer the question with relish and enthusiasm because, what they do for a living resonates brilliantly with their values and life purpose.

Where we are on this continuum, matters hugely on several levels. It affects our wellbeing and health, our family life and relationships and of course, our level of passion and our productivity and effectiveness.

If you are a leader, your answer affects not only you but all the people whom you lead and manage.

Whatever stage you are at in your career work proactively to ensure that what you do matches your values, and that you have a degree of purpose and passion for what you do for so many of your waking hours!

Simon Sinek in his, now legendary TED talk which, incidentally I would make compulsory viewing on ALL degree programmes, MBAs and Leadership Training, is essential viewing for leaders and those aspiring to lead.

I could write pages of prose explaining it but instead, I invite you to spend about 18 minutes of your time watching and listening to Simon Sinek

Click on this text to spend 18.04 minutes learning from the great Simon Sinek on TED

and then continue the learning by reflecting upon the following questions:-

Exercise.

  • Watch Simon Sinek TED talk and then reflect upon the following alone and , if a leader, with your leadership team!
  • What is your why?
  • What is the “why” of the company you work with and does it provide a good fit with your own?
  • Are you working where you are working because of their “why”?
  • Does your current role allow you to tap into and honour your why?
  • Do you recruit people to your organisation who “fit” and can strengthen your company’s why?
  • Do you sell your products or carry out your daily activities with your “why” in mind?
  • Is your “why” obvious to those whom you lead and work with?
  • Are you authentically leading people in a way that honours your own and your company’s “why”?
  • What questions does this generate for you?

If you have a great coach, this is a good exercise to work with. My clients love it and it generates lots of discussion and actions whenever I use it!

Let me know your thoughts after this exercise and if you have time to leave a comment on the blog, I would love to hear from you.

Until next time when I will share with you my personal “why”

Bridget Clapham

Leave a comment or feel free to email me direct via my website by clicking on this link!

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