In the great book ‘Working’ by Studs Terkel the author gives reference to every day work as a ‘Monday to Friday sort of dying.’ When I first came across that sentence I highlighted it immediately. It resonated with me. The words tugged on the heartstrings and a somber sound emerged. I have been there and I can relate. There have been times in my life when I have hated what I was doing with my time. A Monday to Friday sort of dying – what a wonderful way of putting it.
After speaking to so many people on the subject of career choice and progression, I have found that my story is fairly consistent. You meander through school where teachers talk about the big bad world that waits. The subject is usually broached after you have done something wrong, and the teacher is trying to scare you into paying attention and working hard.
“You will not survive ten-minutes in the real world if you cannot sit down and listen!”
As you await your final GCSE results you are given the opportunity to see a careers counsellor. This is the only time I remember ever discussing career choices in school, a 30-minute session at the end of my school term. That’s simply not good enough in my book. You start to feel pressure from your parents. They want you to learn how to provide for yourself and how to be responsible so they inform you that you need to start paying rent. At the same time you have discovered alcohol and having a good time with your friends. You need money, and you need it now, so you grab any job that you can find. It doesn’t matter what you are doing or how much you are earning. You just want to find yourself a job and quick.
My first job was working in a kitchen factory sanding and staining pieces of wood. It’s amazing how ‘fill-in’ jobs can become permanent jobs in the bat of an eyelid. I was fortunate enough to move onto the railway where I was offered a ‘job for life.’ Those were the exact words my interviewer used. That thought intrigued me because I was lazy and didn’t want to find another job. A job for life would do just fine thanks. Unfortunately, I didn’t think ahead. I had no help, no guidance and no inspiration. I was elated that I got that job on the railway, despite not even understanding what it was that they expected me to do?
How to Get a Job You’ll Love by John Lees is the help, guidance and inspiration that I so desperately needed when I was a child transforming into a man. So if you have children then purchase this book today. Read what Lees has to say, learn from it and pass it onto your children; better still suggest that they read the book. But the book is also a great source of inspiration and education for people who wish to make changes in their current role or find a new one altogether. People often get exacerbated about their workplace situation and feel that the only way out is to leave; this is exactly what happened to me. I have since learned, through the education of men like Lees, that I didn’t do enough to try and make my last role more comfortable before deploying the parachute.
If you want to find the job of your dreams then this book is simply amazing. It is rammed full of exercises, ideas and careers advice that will really start to give you the confidence that you can leave. Leaving your job is a very difficult thing to do. To leave it to create the job of your dreams is even harder. Lees shows you that pot of gold at the end of the career rainbow. It is shiny, warm, and comfortable and leaves you yearning to hold it. The exercises are some of the most interesting and rewarding that I have ever encountered.
If you wish to change careers, then Lees has created a blueprint for success. Follow his step-by-step guide and the world is your oyster. A very helpful book that I would recommend to anyone searching for careers advice.