Working overtime

Singapore 20th September 2010

When your job is your passion it does not really matter how many hours you put in, isn’t it? I have been lucky to find my work in something that is also my passion. It has never been about the money (though it is nice to have it), but about creation, building something that wasn’t there before. In our line of lighting design work we have diversity which means that everyday potentially is different from the previous day. Because of that we also work irregular hours as deadlines vary from project to project with overtime a necessity at times to meet these deadlines.

Already when I was a kid I liked building things. My grandmother was an architect and I have always admired her spirit and passion for what she did even though she was not a great architect. The point is that she loved what she was doing. When you love what you are doing you get up and go to work because you want to, not because you have to. Obviously we need bread on the shelf (“brood op de plank” as we say in Dutch), but going to work is then driven by passion and happiness. Joy in your work is key, as people who feel good and enjoy work are motivated and produce the best work.

Today we had some issues with clients who keep pressuring us to bring forward our delivery times on project work which in turn was stressing up individual staff members. That eventually led to upsets and stress between staff, the last thing we want. Everyone reacts to stress and pressure differently. We say things in the heat of the moment and then we start taking things personal. Before you know things have escalated…

My thought for today is that a happy and motivated team is better geared to face stress and pressure. The bug does not stop with them; it stops with the boss of the company. Everyone makes mistakes and misbehavior needs correction, but if I don’t give them my full support in resolving issues I will never earn respect. It is respect and the knowledge that we are a team that will provide the motivation to work things out, even if that means working overtime many hours…

20. September 2010 by Martin Klaasen
Categories: lighting and culture, lighting design practice | Leave a comment

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