Project #84480 - Business

Share an insight about what you have learned from having read your colleagues’ postings and discuss how and why your colleague’s posting resonated with you professionally and personally.

 

post 1

Week 5 Discussion Post

            In our course text Passion and purpose: Stories from the best and brightest young business leaders we were tasked this week with selecting a passage that resonated with us in some way. I came across a section in the book written by Benjamin Schumaker called Joyful on the Job which struck a cord with me.

            I found Schumaker’s story significant after reading through the first paragraph. He tells a story from when he was working for his family’s irrigation business. He and his co-workers were on a job (doing physical labor) and after a full day of tiresome work tested a customer’s system by turning it on. When the sprinkler heads came up from the ground they were assured everything was working properly, and Schumaker and his four co-workers were happy (Coleman, Gulati, & Segovia, 2012).

            I too have had a similar experience. While working as an IT analyst, I’ve been working on projects before and can’t seem to get the program I’m working with to do what I want it to do. After days or weeks of frustration from tinkering with settings (and the occasional profane word under my breath) I’ll finally get everything to work properly. That feeling of satisfaction you get after completing a difficult task is what resonated with me when reading Schumaker’s passage.

            Schumaker goes on in his section of the class text to try to figure out a way to bring happiness into the workplace. He came up with three things leaders can do to make their employees happy. First, leaders should make how someone completes their job flexible. This could mean many different things, from flexible work hours to where someone actually works (remotely or in the office). His second suggestion was to give employees an opportunity to have an impact on people they care about. The idea behind this is to give your employee a deeper sense of purpose in their life. The third thing a leader can do to make their employees happy is to create a workout program. There is actual science behind this suggestion. When people are exercising the body produces endorphins, which makes any human happy (Coleman, Gulati, & Segovia, 2012).

            If we think back to Schumaker’s original story about completing that irrigation job and being happy, we are viewing one of the eight basic human needs described by Scott Lichtenstein, which is ‘significance and achievement’ (Lichtenstein, 2012). By completing their work successfully, each of the people working for the irrigation company had proven they are an important cog in the business, thus exemplifying their significance. And finally, they obviously achieved the task, which satisfies this human need, thus leading to happiness.

 

post 2

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