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FINDING JOY IN WORK

July 2018

It is often said that if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life. While this may be true, we need to determine what brings us joy at work.

Much of what I write about here will relate primarily to healthcare, but with some imagination it can be attributable to any type of work. I have read a lot about pursing your passion and generating enthusiasm to do so. If you have studied and climbed the career ladder and are engaged in what you are doing, the enthusiasm should come easily. It is a by-product of the time and effort you have already put in. Doing meaningful work and making a difference generates enthusiasm. In healthcare, you don’t find many individuals who went into healthcare because they don’t care, they went into healthcare because they want to help others. It is meaningful work. There is also little chance to be bored in healthcare.

Joy in work is not normally found in the finances of business or rules and regulations or in measuring results. It’s found in caring, collaboration and teamwork. It is important we create work environments where people feel a connection to purpose, and where people feel their work is important. If we can’t find a way to raise people’s joy in work, it makes it harder for us to accomplish anything else. As leaders in organizations, we need to listen to our employees to understand what can bring them joy at work within established environments and boundaries. 

Happy employees make happy customers. In healthcare, most people go to a hospital because their doctor wants them to be there. However, their willingness to go back to that same hospital or recommend it to others is all about the care and service they get. In any business, if the customer gets great care or service, they recognize it. For us in healthcare, it’s about relationships with patients, families and visitors.

If you enjoy your work, the customer will know it. Find joy in your work.