Joe wrote a blog entry on what he wants in an ideal work environment, and it’s had me thinking about my ideal work environment for a while now. It’s rare (if not impossible) to find exactly what you want in any given work environment, because there are always disadvantages, whether you’re working for yourself or working for another company.
Recently, I’ve developed a lot of certainty in terms of what I don’t want in the workplace, which by default suggests what I do want, I guess. I think it’s important that I know what I’m looking for when I start looking for jobs after graduating with my MSW in May, so I’ve been taking time here and there to write out my thoughts on what I want and don’t want from a long term position within my field.
It’s become so lengthy at this point, that I will be posting it in bits, and this first criteria was the first thing I thought of when imagining a job that would make me happy.
I’ve discovered over the past eight months that I really don’t like a job that requires constant travel (home visits, driving to each client/location, multiple destinations in a day). It’s caused a total disconnect that leaves me feeling removed from the main staff at my current workplace because I’m never in the office, I’m never up to date on what’s actually happening in the main office, and I find myself feeling lonely and spending a lot of time in traffic.
It’s hard on my car (really, really hard on my car), it’s expensive gas-wise (especially since I’m paid for mileage but not at a rate that fully compensates me), and what I had never considered when taking the job in the summer was that a job that requires a certain number of visits per month can be hard to complete when winter hits and the roads are scary and time-consuming here in Northeastern Ohio.
I really enjoy the days when I’m at internship because I’m in one building (usually just one or two floors), and I really spend my entire time engaged in the workplace. I feel more like a part of the staff at my internship than I do at my own job right now, and when I move on into a more permanent place in my field, I want that place to involve relationships with co-workers and a dynamic that I feel I am a part of.
Right now, I don’t feel like a part of the clinic I work for, and while a social connection isn’t the primary goal of employment, it’s an aspect of the job that makes going to work more bearable for me, especially as a social person who chose a field that involves regular contact and in-depth interaction with people. I want to feel like a part of a community.
More in the series “The Perfect Job” next week.
Tags: brandice, driving, employment, job, joe, list, the perfect job, travel, work, workplace