Have you ever been bored at work? I have.
How do you overcome boredom while at work? Do you scroll on social media? Perhaps, you decide to send a text message to a friend on WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger. I've been there, and some days I continue to struggle, but I believe I may have found a solution.
With some internal reflection, it is possible to create initiatives that benefit you, your employer, and coworkers. Observe your office or department and think about a service you can provide. Reflect on your unique talents and abilities and think about ways you can use your skills to increase productivity, influence sales, or offer another useful service to the company or institution.
For example, I am a writer. [Of course, you know this because you are reading my blog :) One of the observations I have made in the university department where I work, is that my coworkers talk about the desire to publish their research. We have discussed their challenges to find time to write while managing the commitments to teach, advise, and serve on committees.
To produce consistent writing content, it takes discipline, consistency, and accountability.
As a past participant in the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity’s Academic Boot Camp, I developed a schedule that encouraged me to write every day, check- in with colleagues, and create rewards for daily progress on manuscripts. With the tools, I learned in this program, I have produced several academic journal articles, published a book, and contributed over 50 articles to online publications. After listening to my colleagues' concerns, I proposed the organization of a group that meets every week to write on site and holds each participant accountable for writing productivity.
In taking on this additional responsibility, it allows me to use my skills in service to others, and it provides me with an additional task to occupy gaps in my schedule. Downtime in any position is often inevitable, but it is possible to turn these vacancies into opportunities that can benefit your employer, other employees, products, and services.
To recognize opportunities to serve, you must cultivate a service oriented mindset paired with positive self-awareness.
If there is a desire to make a valuable impact in the company or institution where you work, listen and apply the advice shared in this post to your environment. Who knows, it may lend itself to a promotion. Finding that special thing that can only get created by you, requires reflection about how your unique talents, skills, and abilities can fulfill a need.
With this new writing initiative, I plan to use the moments in my schedule when I am not preparing for a class, advising students, facilitating classroom discussions, or serving on a committee to plan for organizing and structuring the group. I will create time tracking documents, feedback surveys, reserve campus spaces for the writing group to meet, and engage in other activities aligned with increasing the establishment of a valuable resource for the department.
Are you a writer and interested in getting your work published? I’m offering a writing and publishing Masterclass on October 4, 2018 and I would love for you to join me. Interested in more information? Check out this link