Saturday, April 25, 2009

It's all about control

Yesterday I posted a poll about what makes you happy at work. And then le@ Third On The Right posted a brilliant comment. She said that her happiness at work is centered on control. Then I realized: So is mine.

I thought the biggest factor for me in work happiness is the people I work with. I realized that's important, but they reason I'm so happy now is the amount of control I have over my own time. As a telecommuter, I work when I want to work. It doesn't have to be between 8 and 5. As long as I get my stuff done on time in a high quality manner, my boss is cool.

I have to wonder if control is a bigger issue with Gen Xers than with other generations. We've struggled with controlling, process-oriented Babyboomers for many years. For Boomers there is one right way, one solution, one track. For Xers, there is one right result, but many roads to get there.

I know when I say Boomers are controlling, it may upset some of my Boomer readers, because they don't think they're controlling. However, there are many many of us Xers who have been slapped in the hand because although the result was correct, we did not do it the "right way." We've been dressed down for not following the appropriate "steps." I'm not a "down with Boomers" gal - but this issue is something both our generations have struggled with.

I still invite you to take my poll. If control is your happiness factor, go ahead and post it in comments.

1 comment:

le @ thirdontheright said...

well thanks for the shout out there :) I had this ah ha moment about six years ago when I realised the money, people and actual work did not give rise to the same degree of satisfaction as having control ....

The flipside of control is responsibility - they go hand in hand - accepting the responsibility is paramount to enjoying the control.

I am happy to have loads of responsibility if I have the control ... one with out the other is, to me , like a care with an off wheel alignment, or having the address of the destination and no map to get there.

I also agree the boomers have a dedicated single path to the end result - the old if you don't show your maths workings you can't score even if the answer is right - catch 22 senario ...

part of my 'success' in a local govt career comes down to not following the 'one true path' but finding a way forward that creates decent outcomes without alientation of stakeholders ...

anyway this is an awfully long comment so will go now - cheers le