Resolve to make your work life less stressful, more satisfying

Now that the hype and hum surrounding the new year is over (almost), I want to share with you some resolutions Gloria Dunn shared with me. Dunn is the author of, From Making a Living to Having a Life (Violin Publishing Company 1999). Perhaps they will get you started down the road to a happier, more balanced work life this year.

New Year’s Resolutions for the Working Challenged:

1.      I resolve to leave a job that makes me ill, overly stressed or depressed.

2.      I resolve that if I don’t have enough time to focus on changing my work life for the better, I will take a sabbatical, a shortened work week, quit my job or find another creative way.

3.      I resolve to let go of the fears that keep me stuck in the wrong job and hurt my life.

4.      I resolve to approach my boss or coworkers to resolve issues when we disagree.

5.      I resolve to have a good attitude about my workplace if I choose to stay there.

6.      I resolve to discover my personal purpose and the work I love.

7.      I resolve to learn from both good and bad experiences at work, so they help me grow personally and professionally.

8.      I resolve to be persistent about getting the results I want and deserve as I approach my next job/career/worklife.

9.      I resolve that I will only work for an employer who treats me with respect.

10. I resolve that I will treat my coworkers the way I wish to be treated. www.workingchallenged.com

Dear Joan:
I work for a small company as the lone overnight employee. My hours are 10 pm to 6 am. I have managed working nights and sleeping days fairly well. I have a set time I like to go to bed and get out of bed. Working by myself is one of the benefits of my job, in my estimation.

I work for a small company as the lone overnight employee. My hours are 10 pm to 6 am. I have managed working nights and sleeping days fairly well. I have a set time I like to go to bed and get out of bed. Working by myself is one of the benefits of my job, in my estimation.

My problem is that my manager forces me to come in at 1 pm for a meeting that lasts one hour or more. The meeting is held every three weeks and everyone is expected to attend, including me. My sleeping pattern is severely upset, and I usually only get a couple of hours of sleep before the meeting and then can’t get back to sleep after the meeting. Only half of the material at the meeting has anything to do with me. Even those things that do have anything to do with me could be brought to my attention over the phone, e-mail or some other way.

You’ve guessed by now that I don’t want to attend these meetings. Are there any laws I can call on to get me out of these meetings? Or, how can I get around going to these meetings without inflicting the rage of my manager?


Answer:

Please see number 4, above. Rather than looking for a legal way out, why not try a logical way to solve it? Your manager is attempting to include you so that you not only get the information you need, but you feel included in the team. In addition, he or she wants the rest of the team to hear your input on issues. E-mail and memos are fine for one-way information, but they fall short on interaction, input and understanding.

It’s easy to see why you’d have difficulty with the timing of these meetings. I doubt the rest of the team would like to get up at 1 am to attend a meeting on your shift. So, why not mention this sleep disruption to your manager and ask if the meeting can be moved to, say, 8 am or 5 pm. In other words, staying awake a few hours longer or getting up a little earlier once a month is much less disruptive to your sleep schedule. I suspect your manager would have a hard time finding someone to replace you. Most people don’t like to work alone at night. So, I doubt you will see any rage. In fact, you may be surprised at how accommodating your manager is.


Dear Joan:
How can I start a cover letter informing a potential employer of my desire to relocate? I have a target date of May 1, 2000, however, I can relocate sooner with an employment offer. Secondly, should I put my current address or the address where I’ll be living? (I’ll be staying with family.)

How can I start a cover letter informing a potential employer of my desire to relocate? I have a target date of May 1, 2000, however, I can relocate sooner with an employment offer. Secondly, should I put my current address or the address where I’ll be living? (I’ll be staying with family.)


Answer:

In your cover letter, simply state that you will be moving to the area as of May 1st. This should increase employers’ interest in you, since you have already committed to working in their area. It will also appeal to a company who may not be willing or able to pay for relocation.

In addition, if you can get to this new location in the interim, mention that you will be in the area periodically and will be available for interviews. This may remove another barrier to a potential employer. If you are able to spend any time in this new location before May, why not pick a week, a few months out, to set up some informational interviews? Giving people enough notice and a specific timeframe usually produces excellent results.

As for your contact information, put both addresses and phone numbers at the top of your resume. List one as "Before May 1, 2000" and the other "After May 1, 2000." That should do the trick.

 


Joan Lloyd is a Milwaukee based executive coach and organizational & leadership development strategist. She is known for her ability to help leaders and their teams achieve measurable, lasting improvements. Joan Lloyd & Associates, specializes in leadership development, organizational change and teambuilding, providing: executive coaching, CEO coaching & leader team coaching, 360-degree feedback processes, retreat facilitation and presentation skill coaching and small group labs. Contact Joan Lloyd & Associates at (414) 573-1616, mailto:info@joanlloyd.com, or www.JoanLloyd.com 
 
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