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My radio alarm woke me up this morning with an interesting discussion on “If you can choose: Do a job you love but with a bad boss or Work with a good boss but in a job you hate”. The Malaysian listeners have surprised me that they chose the first option.

Screen Shot 2015-08-18 at 11.48.15 amAs I laid still in bed, quietly listen to the radio deejays debated among themselves, I pondered over my choice. I listened carefully to each callers that got through to the radio station and voiced their opinions. After weighting the both options and its consequences (and of course, lazing in bed for an hour), I came up with this:

Doing a job you love is choosing to be passionate about what you do. You’ll do a great job and enjoy it at the same time however time after time, if you have a bad boss, you won’t get recognized your efforts. How long will it be before you call it quits?

We are humans and we, like it or not, requires affirmations in your lives, this is who we are. You may get acknowledged by your peers and maybe other bosses but it’s your boss who determines your appraisal and your promotion. Unless you don’t work directly under the bad boss and he is so high up there, he doesn’t affect much into your contributions or you report to many other bosses in your work and he is not the deciding factor in your growth in the company. Otherwise, how long it will be to take you to give up after watching inadequate colleagues getting pay raises and promotions year after year?

Screen Shot 2015-07-20 at 11.46.43 pmThe only visible solutions I see to get out of the vicious cycle are either he resigns and you get a new boss, your work is so good that catches the attention of other bosses whom in turn wants you in their team or you get yourself a new job. All these options are not within your control and you’ll be wasting your time and effort versus the emotions of others.

Next, suffering under a job you hate day after day will eventually break you down. You won’t do your best because you hate it even though your nice boss kept encouraging you to strive for the best.

Well, we can’t have our cake and eat it too! There is hardly a best scenario out there where you love your job, your peers love you and you’ve got yourself the best boss in the world. It’s not impossible, I have a few jobs like this before. It’s a breeze to come into work knowing you’ve made an impact in others lives. What you can do is choose the lesser evil.

You might be doing a job you detest but that doesn’t mean it has to deter you from putting your best foot forward. Your emotions and not others can be controlled by you. What you need to do is to have a good deep talk with your nice boss and allow him to understand you don’t like what you are doing now. If it is within his authority and you are a good employee, chances are high he wants to keep you happy and move you to a position that you are passionate about.

That does not mean that you leave everything to your nice boss. You will have to make some effort yourself to help him help you. Start by honestly questioning yourself what is it that you hate about the job you are doing now, could you alter it to make it more pleasant to you, how can he help to make your current role easier or more interesting or more challenging?
Then you need to evaluate yourself and look within the organization whether there is an opening role you would like to undertake. Match your skills, education and experience to this role and see if it’s a fit.

brown-15723_640If yes, hooray! Go to your nice boss with the position aka present a solution, not a problem to him and explain to him you deserve at least an interview to this role.

If no, map out what you can improve to get this role you want. If you can’t get the job within your company, you possibly can’t get something similar elsewhere too. Make sure it’s not your skills that are the obstacles to your dream position. Be realistic, you can’t expect to be changing an accounts administration assistant role to an IT research team manager role without the relevant experience or skills. But if that’s what you want, go ahead and take up courses to get closer to your dream.

Your nice boss will appreciate that you didn’t put up an unreasonable demand and you are constantly improving yourself at your expense. Even you have the skill sets for an ideal position but the place is filled, you likely to make a deep impression on him to consider you once the position is opened again. What you need to be is to be patient and give him and the company time.

Ultimately, my two cents worth is that choose the things you can control and work on it, leave those you unable to control or influence unfold itself in due time.

Does the above make sense? What would you choose? Let me know at the comments below. Have a Happy Friday!!


7 replies on “Do what you Love, Love what you Do

  1. I’m not sure which I’d pick, I’m lucky not to have to make that choice. I think a mundane job would annoy me but I’ve had far better experiences with good bosses and mundane work than a bad boss. I think there’s always the chance at being given new responsibilities or even a promotion with a good boss, but one who hates you will make you dread going to work everyday. I haven’t had a really bad boss but I remember a couple of really bad teachers and college lecturers and you just don’t feel like doing anything if they don’t appreciate the effort…at least that’s how I felt.


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