Thursday, December 07, 2006

Interesting thought...

Why you should not like your job.  That is right - you should not like it.  That is not to say you should "not like it" (as in hate it) either.  I agree, if you start to not love your job - time to start looking for a way to change it.  That doesn't mean you have to change jobs, but you might have to change your job.

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34 Comments:

Blogger Joel Garry said....

Or, you might just need to find some outside interests.

A local plumber I've used is a big fan of off-roading. What can a plumber do to change his job?

Yesterday I noticed his big-dog truck has a new sticker on it, he apparently has started an off-road apparel company with the same name as his plumbing company.

And I can guess he made his real money in the house he bought for an office for the businesses.

Maybe %80 of the jobs are going to be unlovable, and rather than trying to tilt an edifice with a paperclip, happiness might be found through identifying and accepting that which one cannot change.

I know only one person who I grew up with who has lasted at a company for 30 years (including one boss who was a bit off and is on death row for a notorious child rape/murder). My friends secret? He has a fairly pedestrian outlook on life.

word: urobvdi

Thu Dec 07, 10:07:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

I find I get bored if I do the same thing for a while. This is why I contract so I can move from project to project. I think most people get comfortable with their jobs and the security. I tend to get bored. So I move on.

Thu Dec 07, 10:56:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Joel Garry - ditto!

We all need to get a life for f$cks sake. You DONT'T NEED to love your job ... if you do ... then great, but to say that you NEED TO LOVE IT is a different story.

There's so much more to life than a job. Just go and visit the ruins of past civilizations and tell me if you feel that what you are doing today at an average job will matter in 2000 years from now ...

I watched a national geographic channel last night and they were talking about how the Moon has been there for millions of years and how our planet would be if not for the Moon ... Our life span is not even a blink of an eye and our capabilities are pathetic in comparison with the world that we live in.

Get out there enjoy it while it lasts take care of your family and find a way to look forward to what's next ... find GOD ... not a LOVE for your JOB!

Thu Dec 07, 12:56:00 PM EST  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

ops$tkyte%ORA10GR2> select 40/(16*7) * 100 from dual;

40/(16*7)*100
-------------
35.7142857


I don't know, for something you nominally spend over 1/3rd of your time doing - I might want to really love what I'm doing.

Not wishing I were somewhere else doing something else.

I agree the other time should be good too - but if you are lucky enough to love what you are doing....

Thu Dec 07, 01:00:00 PM EST  

Blogger Bill S. said....

I agree. To put it in my own words,

"When you like your job
Then your job is fun,
And the work isn't work
So the work gets done."

Bill S.

Thu Dec 07, 01:38:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Piero said....

A man is a man, a job is a piece of a man, a database is a piece of a piece of a man and Oracle is a piece of a piece of a piece of a MAN.
Come on, please, do realize that if one REALLY *LOVES* his Oracle-related job, there must be something terribly sad and boring in his life. ORACLE? Really?
It's all about useless technicisms (by the way not at the edge of human knowledge).
Useless most of the times, many times even harmful for a MAN and for mankind TOO, but useful for those few.
Think about the final use of your incredible knowledge about Oracle.
But, yes, I totally agree, "for something you nominally spend over 1/3rd of your time doing - I might want to really love what I'm doing"

Cheers

Thu Dec 07, 02:29:00 PM EST  

Blogger Rachel said....

Tom -- Here's another book for your reading list (although in your case I think you've already found the answer)

"What Should I Do With My Life?" by Po Bronson.

NOT a "self-help" book, rather a collection of stories about people who made changes in their lives for a variety of reasons, among them not being in love with the work they were doing.

It's one of the major influences in my decision to leave the Oracle world and go off and do something entirely different. I didn't love my job. I didn't like my job.

Was this the right choice? Dunno yet. But leaving was definitely the right choice.

Thu Dec 07, 03:19:00 PM EST  

Blogger SeanMacGC said....

It's about:

working to live,

as opposed to:

living to work

So, whilst it would be a real bonus to love my work (which I'm lucky enough to do at times), I would hope never to be in the position where it would be the be-all and end-all (the former above).

Thu Dec 07, 03:44:00 PM EST  

Blogger Doug Floyd said....

I would suggest another book to read that provides another perspective on life and our place in the world: Ishmael by Daniel Quinn. He has other works too that are interesting reads.

Thu Dec 07, 03:52:00 PM EST  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

do realize that if one REALLY *LOVES* his Oracle-related job, there must be something terribly sad and boring in his life.

how absurd, excuse my bluntness, but how absurd.

Teaching - how fulfilling is that.

The helping, perfect.

The community. Awesome.

The people I work with. Incredible.

it is *not* all techisms.

Thu Dec 07, 03:59:00 PM EST  

Blogger SeanMacGC said....

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

Thu Dec 07, 04:17:00 PM EST  

Blogger Arun Mathur said....

I majored in Computer Science because I really wanted to program video games with state of the art animation. However, during my co-op years where I would work every other semester, I learned pretty quickly that every project revolves around a database. I know there tends to be religious wars as to what component is the focal point of a system. But, I stand firm in that the database needs to be front and center.

Regards,
Arun

Thu Dec 07, 04:29:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Piero said....

how absurd, excuse my bluntness, but how absurd.

Sorry, the bluntness was mine when I wrote before, but one has to ask himself WHAT is "teaching" (technicalities about a db, no?) and what's the final goal.

The helping

That's not the point, I would ask myself if I'm teaching something that is good and useful (for the one I'm teaching to and for all of us).

it is *not* all techisms.

I'd say that a great part of the job (at least for us mere mortals of Oracle, perhaps not for You) it's all about techisms, that's what we're paid for. Or, if You prefer, call it engineering. The point here is asking oneself what's the final purpose of that, what are the consequencies... only then you can LOVE (consciously, as a whole, totally aware) your job otherwise it's all about a funny game.
And "loving" (even a job) is not a funny game: it's a game.
That's my point of view: and maybe I'm totally wrong, obviously.

Cheers

Thu Dec 07, 06:07:00 PM EST  

Blogger Joel Garry said....

Re-reading this, I'm struck by two things:

The person relating the story didn't really change his job, but rather his attitude towards it.

The chart comparing liking v. loving a job - the loving part sounds exactly like the manic phase of a manic depressive.

word: ytofjrz

Thu Dec 07, 06:37:00 PM EST  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

sounds exactly like the manic phase of a manic depressive

Not really - the manic depressive transitions from the "down" to the "up" state (and then back again to down, in a perpetual cycle) at "random", even if the environment is always the same.

The author transitioned from a "feel good" to "feel great" after having changed the environment with a conscious and rational action - nothing pathological, quite the opposite!

Thu Dec 07, 06:58:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

I like my job, and I am good at it! I love my job as a father and I'm great at! You don't have to be great at everything, you just have to find a balance that make you happy.

Thu Dec 07, 09:52:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Robert said....

Having read the article & everyy thing on this page(some pretty good comments !)...why am I reminded of that battle speech in the movie "Braveheart"

“Yes, you might live for a while and if you fight you might die, but years from now, dying alone in your bed, which one among you would not give all your days from this day to that for just one chance to come back here and show these English that they may take our land, they may take our lives, but they will never take our freedom.”

Thu Dec 07, 11:22:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Tom,

Asktom seems to be having a problem. This is the error thats being shown:

ORA-01688: unable to extend table ASK_TOM.WWC_ASK_ACTIVITY_LOG$ partition PART_12 by 64 in tablespace ASK_TOM_LOG

Fri Dec 08, 02:29:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

To anonymous: I agreed 100% with what you said, until you started talking about finding GOD...

Doesn't your own talk of how insignificant we are compared to the lifespans of planets make you realize that there is no "god"?

Fri Dec 08, 03:31:00 AM EST  

Blogger So_Be_It said....

Enlarge your table, Tom!

Fri Dec 08, 05:04:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Alexander Kjerulf said....

Thanks for sparking this conversation Tom - I'm, glad you found my post interesting.

The comments here are very interesting, and I would like to add a thought: To me, the whole thing comes down to what we assume about work.

Do we assume that work must be fairly unpleasant, and the best you can do is get a job you don't mind too much?

Or do we assume that work can be stimulating, fun, energizing, inspiring, motivating and meaningful?

I've tried both - and considering how huge the gap between the two is for me, I've decided that I will never again settle for anything less than work that makes me happy.

Fri Dec 08, 09:11:00 AM EST  

Anonymous SteveF said....

"Or do we assume that work can be stimulating, fun, energizing, inspiring, motivating and meaningful?"

Yes it can be. It would be nice if it was always thus, however...

"I've tried both - and considering how huge the gap between the two is for me, I've decided that I will never again settle for anything less than work that makes me happy"

...for most of us, the primary function of work is that it should generate sufficient money to support our families and enable us to do this things we truly enjoy. Enjoying work is important but it isn't the primary motivation for most people and not everyone is able to make a job they enjoy doing pay or to have the flexibility to alter their present job. Would you rather see your family starve than do a job which doesn't make you happy?

What about the many jobs in the world that are, and will always be, boring, unpleasant, repetitive, dangerous and thoroughly unlovable yet are vital and need someone to do them? Should they remain because noone will *love* doing them?

Blithely telling everyone to love their job can be a pretty smug, glib statement and is largely the preserve of those of us with sufficient education or financial freedom to have those sort of choices available to them.

Here endeth the rant... ;-)

Fri Dec 08, 10:02:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

> Doesn't your own talk of how insignificant we are compared
> to the lifespans of planets make you realize that there
> is no "god"?

No -- just the opposite.

SteveF -- well said, well said!

Fri Dec 08, 11:37:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

We all need to get a life for f$cks sake.

... find GOD ...

Spare me the philosophy.

Not the same Anonymous, btw.

Fri Dec 08, 11:59:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

> Spare me the philosophy.

and your point is?

Fri Dec 08, 12:42:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Piero said....

"...when faced with the choice between engaging with reality or engaging with what Erich Fromm calls the “necrophiliac” world of wealth and power, choose life, whatever the apparent costs may be. Your peers might at first look down on you: poor Nina, she’s twenty-six and she still doesn’t own a car. But those who have put wealth and power above life are living in the world of death, in which the living put their tombstones – their framed certificates signifying acceptance to that world – upon their walls. Remember that even the editor of the Times, for all his income and prestige, is still a functionary, who must still take orders from his boss. He has less freedom than we do, and being the editor of the Times is as good as it gets.

You know you have only one life. You know it is a precious, extraordinary, unrepeatable thing: the product of billions of years of serendipity and evolution. So why waste it by handing it over to the living dead?"
- George Monbiot -

Fri Dec 08, 12:44:00 PM EST  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

But the Author of the paper didn't want to pursue "wealth and power" in the workplace at all ... He wanted simply to "be happy" when working :)

And since He said that He (quote) "asked his boss about this and he was very supportive", his environment looks almost like a paradise, not an hell of "wealth and power".

Actually I would say that technical jobs are good especially for the reason that (often) a big part of your work is dealing with algorithms and facts, instead of political maneuvers and fights.

Fri Dec 08, 01:10:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

and your point is?

"sake" is a Japanese alcoholic beverage.

Fri Dec 08, 01:36:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Piero said....

Alberto,

put it into perspective: when I raise my head and see all that data that doesn't interest me at all, than i see the world of "wealth and power". Yes, first you have to raise your head, otherwise you only see those smart alogorithms. You can find it funny, but that's only a game you might like for a while, not worth 1/3 of our lives. It doesn't allow you to LOVE your WORK.
At the end of the day, they give you money because your good at that techism: think about it.

Cheers

Fri Dec 08, 03:00:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Piero said....

Sorry, i didn't paste all the text...

The man here only applied a "patch" to 1/3 of his life and can now keep on hiding from reality

Cheers

Fri Dec 08, 03:04:00 PM EST  

Blogger Bill S. said....

Piero,

Think about it - you said,
"put it into perspective: when I raise my head and see all that data that doesn't interest me at all,..."

"all that data that doesn't interest me at all"

Well, maybe it interests Alberto, which may be why he loves his work. Just because YOU don't find it interesting doesn't mean someone else won't.

Just a thought.

Bill S.

Fri Dec 08, 03:06:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Anonymous said....

>> Doesn't your own talk of how insignificant we are compared
>> to the lifespans of planets make you realize that there
>> is no "god"?

> No -- just the opposite.

See, I knew you'd say that.

Basically, religious people are those who draw the wrong conclusion from the above realization.

Wake up.

Sat Dec 09, 04:48:00 AM EST  

Anonymous Robert said....


Anonymous said....
"sake" is a Japanese alcoholic beverage.


Rice wine, to be exact

Sun Dec 10, 07:24:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Sokrates said....

these ones don't like their jobs:
http://www.dukelabs.com/Job%20Awards/JobAwards.htm

Mon Dec 11, 10:31:00 AM EST  

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