Job crafting is the latest buzzword doing the rounds all over our social media and LinkedIn feeds.
The thing with buzzwords and jargon is that often what they ask of us is unrealistic. At best, they are at times irrelevant and just add to the noise around us.
What exactly is job crafting and is it something that is realistic, doable and achievable without sounding outrageous and demanding by a normal employee?
Let us quickly look into it. Job crafting involves seeing the job description as a work in progress, and finding ways to make it more aligned with one’s goals, strengths and values. It is a bottom-up approach.
However, that does not mean employees should be reshaping the jobs such that they don’t have to do what they don’t like. It is not about throwing responsibilities away or Quiet Quitting. As suggested in our earlier article about Quiet Thriving, job crafting is a lot about shifting perspectives. Job crafting is about finding ways to do more of what makes your job more enjoyable.
In our earlier article about Quiet Thriving, we mentioned how a shift in perspective can help us see our jobs in a new light. That too is a kind of job crafting, at the cognitive level. Finding a new sense of purpose in our jobs is also a kind of job crafting. Let us take a look at a few aspects about job crafting in a little more detail.
There are some tasks which we genuinely find interesting and motivating. Finding the tasks you enjoy and crafting your role to do more of those is what task crafting is all about. This could involve talking to your manager, and asking them to assign you more responsibilities that you enjoy. It can also be about finding new challenges and avenues to learn, and hence can also involve asking your manager to assign you a different than usual role in group projects.
This little tweaking can go a long way in helping one see their work in a new light, helping to break the monotony and finding healthy ways to channelise the need to be challenged and combat the boredom that may have set in over time. For example, you may come to realise that you love interacting with new people. Communicating that with your manager might mean that you get more responsibilities that involve interacting with new people, such as mentoring new recruits, meeting delegates from other companies and so on. This is all about gaining a fresh sense of enthusiasm about your job.
Speaking of a fresh sense of enthusiasm, social support at workplace can go a long way in enabling us to keep our motivation levels in check. Read on.
People, aka, colleagues are an important part of most jobs. Relationship crafting is about consciously trying to better your relations with your colleagues. While many of us do enjoy simply coming to work and doing our job, without needing to interact with people much, some basic cordial rapport building is important.
Relationship crafting, that is, trying to build some rapport with the colleagues enables one to find some social support when the work itself might get challenging. A good rapport with colleagues ensures some community and network building at work. It also can get us going through good and bad times. While your job description may or may not really mention the need to work interdepartmentally, establishing a good rapport with people from the other departments would add an ease of functioning, access to more perspectives and even more learning opportunities.
Amidst the ever-evolving job market, and the demands it brings, job crafting enables employees to ensure their job remains relevant, purposeful, and up to date, with never-ending learning. What’s more, it enables employers to have motivated employees.