Before I was a Blogger and Social Media Manager, I was a recruiter. Some people thought I had a great job. Other people thought I had the job from hell. On different days, I would have agreed with both. Being a recruiter was not easy. It was a daily challenge to find the right people for all of our assignments.
But the wins were great!
On good days, I'd call an enthusiastic applicant and tell him or her that the client loved them and that they got the job. Or, I'd call a frustrated client who has all but given up on finding the right person for their environment and tell them to get a desk in order because I had filled their job order! On exceptional days, I'd call a prospective client just when they desperately needed someone that I just interviewed. On those days, I'd hang up the phone and know that my hard work made someone's life better.
That's what got me to the top of the leader board of my division. It wasn't the bonuses (although those were nice). It was believing that I could make a difference in other people's lives. In turn, I was rewarded for that belief and that goal. I wasn't completely altruistic. Trust me... I smiled all the way to the bank!
But I was happy because I was in an energetic environment and I was making a difference.
Before I was a recruiter, I worked in hotels. Sales and Catering. I started as a bartender, moved into event coordinating, and eventually into the sales department.
I loved bartending. Every night was a party. People were celebrating life's wonderful moments. And as a wedding coordinator, I got to run around with a clipboard and headset, making sure everything was running on schedule and that everyone was happy. What OCD Party Girl wouldn't love that? I was having so much fun, that I didn't even realize that the folks in sales didn't smile that much unless they were out on the floor meeting clients. I obviously ignored that when I went for the sales position.
I hated that sales job.
Don't get me wrong. I love sales! But that job was less than extraordinary. There was very little socializing and I was no longer part of the big celebrations in people's lives. My work wasn't having an impact on anyone's special moment. I wasn't making a difference. I was just counting rooms. "Heads in beds."
The office environment was also a huge factor. I'm a bubbly person. I like to stand up and walk around, bouncing ideas off of others. There was no bubbly or bouncing in that office. Just nose to the grindstone and filling out endless reports. My soul was not flourishing.
I was not happy.
Still, I did my job with a smile because I was 800 miles away from any family and I had two little kids to feed. Have you ever been there? Horrible work environment but bills to pay so you stay? Yeah, I'm sure I'm not the only one.
One day, two undercover recruiters came in pretending to need some meeting space, I didn't let on that I was annoyed with their lack of specific event details. I gladly toured them around our space, pointing out all the benefits to having an event at our hotel. They called me back a week later to discuss an opportunity in marketing. I didn't completely understand what they did, but they had me at "No weekends or holidays."
A month later, I was calling my first interviewee to tell her that she got the job. She squeed... I squeed... we all squeed!! At that moment, I realized I had made a significant difference in someone's life. I was hooked. See, I need to feel that I'm of service to others in order to do well at whatever job I'm doing. It's a little codependent, I suppose, but it's how I thrive at whatever job I'm in. It's how I'm made. It's who I am. I know that whatever it is I do has to have an element of service to others or I won't be happy.
And if I have to work, I want to be happy!
I liked social environments and helping people, but I found myself taking jobs just to pay the bills. Have you ever done that? Then I took "The Ultimate Life Tool" test a couple of years ago. It basically said that I will HATE any job that isn't social and doesn't have some sort of service to others.
The Ultimate Life Tool is a Human Assessment Instrument that enables professionals and individuals to identify personal potential, human tolerance, perceptivity, motivations and behavioral strengths & weaknesses. Each one of us has an ideal work environment that we'll thrive in and people that we work best with. Knowing what those are is invaluable in being happy at work, as well as in life.
Just because you can do a job, doesn't mean you should do it in an environment you are going to hate going to or being at every day for months... maybe even years to come. You can be an accountant or graphic designer or sales person at any company. However, the key to being happy in any job, and a success at anything you do, is to work in the environment that you thrive in. If you can't be yourself because you don't fit in that environment, you will NOT be happy.
As a recruiter, I could tell when someone was going to be successful long term. It had a lot to do with their job skills, of course. That's how they landed the jobs. But it had even more to do with being able to be their natural selves in that work environment. Working where you can be yourself, where you thrive as a person as well as an employee is the best way to be happy in ANY job.
If you don't already know what kind of environment or what types of people you would excel around (or on the flip side, the kind of places and people you should avoid), take The Ultimate Life Tool test. You'll receive an extensive report all about Y.O.U. Use the code CMYCG for special discounted rates for my readers.