It’s OK to be a good employee, but are you?

My boss and I were talking about possible topics for a Lunch and Learn program we are starting this year.  He brought up a topic that I have a passion about… Many people do not know what it takes to be a good employee AND it is OK to be good, you don’t have to be the best.

What’s next?

It seems we are all looking at what is next.  Some interviewers even ask about this.  Where do you want to be in five years?  What are you goals?  I don’t think goals are bad but many times they are not where we NEED to be, there are where we THINK we WANT to be.  Many times goals are are like that person you always wanted to go out with.  Only, once you are engaged, you realize that they are a self-absorbed muggle.

What if we stopped looking at CONTENTMENT as a bad word?  Sure, if we were all content the economy would come to a screetching halt but I am not worried about that.  There are enough of the self-absorbed Jones-chasing people out there to keep up demand.  I know because I use to be one.  Even now I struggle to not be one.

I want to be good at my job, enjoy what I do, the people I work with and  I want to be paid a fair wage for a fair day’s work.

Most people would scoff at those statements.  All the books and self-help stuff tells you to be the best.  You need to climb the ladder and move up.  You need to fight THE MAN till you become the man.  But to what end?  Most of this is just chasing after the wind.  You move up to make more but with that usually comes more responsibility and more stress.  Do you really want to be the person that realizes later on that you missed your kid’s childhood?

Let me be the first person to tell you that good is good enough.  I am not saying that you shouldn’t grow and want to get better but you don’t always need to be looking to move up.  There is a great peace that comes with contentment.  I want to be content with what I have but ready to take advantage of any opportunities that come my way.  I am always looking for better ways to do things but not to beat others and not for the financial rewards.

Who doesn’t want to make a little (or a lot) more money?   But in the words of Ferris Bueller “I said it before and I’ll say it again. Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”  No matter what you think happens after this life, you only get one shot at this one and you don’t want to miss it.

The question isn’t what are we going to do. The question is what aren’t we going to do.
Ferris Bueller

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