What Is it You Do

“My boss doesn’t know where I am.”

“Mine does not care really. I do what I want.”

“Sometimes I do not even know what I am supposed to do.”

“I think mine doesn’t even know what they are supposed to do, let alone me.”

“Hey, as long as I get paid…”

Of course, I was not minding my own business, eaves-dropping; but really “as long as I get paid.” And not knowing what to do, really?

It’s a perennial conversation opener, “Where do you work?”  Work, the key here and congrats to you if you can give a clear account of the time you spend ‘at work’.  Or just describe it to a complete stranger or explain to a potential investor, a student interested in choosing a career or to your friends and family exactly what your job really entails.

Do you know what the company or government ministry you work for actually does and what your role in it is? Some places of work are simple to explain and explain themselves by their name, but do you know more than just their name? How much about where you work is still just the basics, like the name of the place, the building in which it is located and the opening, the lunch and the knocking off hour. What happens in the building you work? What do they produce, how much of it do they produce, how much money does it make, how many people work there, does it have any competitors, does it beat the competition and have a good or bad reputation?

What, if anything has changed since you first sat at that desk or stood behind that counter? Do you even know what your actual role is or does it change from day to day and at the whim of your boss? If you do know it, are you happy doing it, is there a chance that you will move to something else better and if so when?

Many places of work have a mission statement and expect their staff to know it. If yours is one of them do you know what this statement outlines? There is also a thing called a code of conduct? Could be your work place has one? Have you read it? There is also what some might call the boring stuff like the company’s history.  Do you know it?

All the above questions answered together with, goals, objectives and a work place’s code of conduct will give you an idea on what is expected of you and you will know how to behave each work day. You may work for a private company, the city council, government ministry or a small just starting company but, the type of business the place you work is in, its size and its structure will make a difference to your role in it. If you know who you are working for and where you fit in, this will make your work life so much easier and enjoyable.

Make an effort and get to know your work place.

Kwachalelo

A Zambian site sharing quick read articles around work, money and adulting life with selective interviews and quotes.
The founder, editor and lead writer who left university with a good grasp of public administration, economics, money, banking and international relations is also qualified in journalism and creative writing. She has been published in Drum and The BBC Focus on Africa Magazine and has been featured in several local and international publications.
An avid bird watcher with an extraordinary fondness for chikanda ( a Zambian delicatessen that vegans and non-vegans world-wide are putting on their bucket list ) she often tweets in poetry and short prose @kwachalelo