Adead-end job, by definition, is a job role where an employee sees no scope for growth, further learning, reflection and strategic thinking.
Sometimes, one may even be really good at his role, but will still feel there are no more mountains left for him to conquer. When flooded with a plethora of monotonous work, it becomes more of a burden than an everyday task. This could lead to frustration and, of course, the miserable feeling of being underpaid.Skills seem obsolete and, ultimately , career is at a standstill. It is inevitable that every employee will feel this at some point in his career.
So, how would an employee come to know that he is in a dead-end job?
The very first inkling will be the employee’s realisation that the job is too mechanical and that there is nothing more to it than there already is. It is no more aligned to his career goals. Here, there is also a risk of getting too comfortable with the stagnant job that he fails to realise where he’s heading.
Next, the employee begins to realise his values are not in sync with that of the organisation. Mismatches may be seen in terms of culture, work ethics, civic responsibility or even the environmental aspects of its operations.
If every morning seems to be like a Monday morning, it is time to reevaluate the status of the job. The absence of challenges or excitements at the workplace is one of the main dispositions that contribute to the morning fever.
So now the problem is brought to light. What next?
Cognizance of the situation is just the entrée. The best thing to do in this situation would be to take responsibility of the quality of the job that is done. Blaming the company will only prove to be more of a problem. Rather, he should honestly assess his bearings and take thoughtful and purposeful actions.
The first step would be to speak up. If an employee is in this quagmire and hasn’t addressed it due to the challenge of having to confront his supervisor, then now is the right time. Before doing so, it is imperative to assess how much effort is worth putting forth and what could possibly be the return.
What can the organisation do?
The employee and the organisation should work hand-in-hand to address this problem. One unique methodology to bring spark to a job will be to ask the employee to propose a role where he would be more competent and his skill sets would be justified. Here, the employee may be asked to sculpt his own job description to bring about more productivity. A job rotation policy could be incorporated wherein the employee is transferred to a new job role in which he will be more competent and productive.
Employees in leadership or management roles could be coupled with a colleague in order to gain cross-functional expertise.
Providing the employee with a sabbatical is also an option. In this period, he may train himself for a more competent and challenging role when he returns. If the employee is socially aligned, he may be engaged in CSR-related projects along with his regular job roles. Cross-skilling and up-skilling could be practiced in order to respond to fluctuating workflows.
This process ensures an agile, durable and flexible workforce.
If there is no room for growth, make a new door and foray into new territories. Ultimately, it is not about having a positive attitude. It is about making positive moves.
Source: TOI 28 Oct’2015