People want their work to be meaningful.
This doesn’t always mean ‘save the world’ meaningful, but work that’s personally meaningful to them.
People want to feel good about:
- What they’re doing
- Why they’re doing it
- How they’re doing it
- Who they’re doing it with
- What they’re doing together
- How they’re doing it together
- The organization in which they’re doing it
When people don’t feel good about some or all of these, their work is not meaningful.
Or not as meaningful as it could be.
When work isn’t meaningful
People may or may not consciously dwell upon these individual elements.
And their views of how they’re feeling frequently change based on things that are going on inside of them (internally) and things going on outside of them (externally).
But taken collectively (or individually), when there is a gap between how well they do feel and how well they could feel — that is, when it’s not as meaningful as it could be — things suffer.
It’s that “I don’t want to be here”/“I don’t want to do this” feeling. It feels like a waste of time and energy. It’s a frantic treadmill, with no real purpose.
It’s unnecessary stress.
People become unmotivated, disengaged, numb, and bide their time. Or worse.
It’s certainly not a healthy environment.
From Sleepwalking to Sparkle
Our shorthand for this suffering is ‘sleepwalking’.
While it might be an interesting altered state to try once, sleepwalking is not something anyone want to routinely experience on the job. Not the staff. Not the employer.
At the other end of the spectrum is ‘sparkle’.
This is when people feel good about what’s going on internally and good about what’s going on externally.
This happens when work is meaningful.
Make Meaningful Work is about the act of moving people along the spectrum from sleepwalking to sparkle.
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