Where have all the good jobs gone?

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Are you one of the lucky few, who love what they do?

Do you jump out of bed each day eager to get to work so you can fill up your heart and soul with the good juice you get from your job?

Or do you drag your sorry butt, mutter expletives at the traffic on your slow commute, fill up your stained coffee cup on arrival and bitch to your cubicle neighbour that your Powerball numbers didn’t come up again last night, hence why you showed up again today?

It seems we all want a good job. But what is a good job and where have they all gone?

According to US News’ best jobs of 2015 it all comes down to good pay, manageable work-life balance and good future job prospects.  According to their research the top 10 “best” jobs are:

  1. Dentist
  2. Nurse Practitioner
  3. Software Developer
  4. Physician
  5. Dental Hygienist
  6. Physical Therapist
  7. Computer Systems Analyst
  8. Information Security Analyst
  9. Registered Nurse
  10. Physician Assistant

But surely what makes a good job varies from person to person and is a hugely personal thing?

When I review that list of top 10, all I see is medical or information technology roles, and I don’t do either and yet I love what I do!

Perhaps there is more to finding a great job than meets the eye or satisfies the survey polls.

Gallup defines a good job as 30+ hours per week of consistent work with a pay check from an employer. Based on this definition, Gallup projects that 1.3 billion out of the world’s roughly 5 billion adults have a good job. Of these 1.3 billion, roughly 12% are engaged at work and have great jobs.

That means that out of a global workforce of an estimated 3.2 billion working adults only 5% have a great job. Which results in almost 3 billion people who want a great job but don’t yet have one.

What I’ve consistently found through my work as a company culture architect is that when people are engaged in what they are doing the individual and the company vastly outperform their peers, regardless of what their role is.

You can be a programmer, a waitress, a greens keeper, a teacher or an insurance agent and love what you do. When we are engaged in our work we are more passionate, creative, and entrepreneurial, and our enthusiasm fuels growth.

I also found that when people are more emotionally connected to the mission and purpose of their work they are more likely to happily volunteer their best work every day.

So how do you create for yourself a good or even a great job so you can enjoy the emotional connection and productivity that comes from being in the flow and doing what you love?

  1. Start with your WHYwhy do you do what you do? Why does it matter and what difference do you make? Are there any employers out there who believe what you believe and how can you work for them?
  2. Look at WHO you work with – are the people in your work environment energetic and engaged, do they lift you up and support you to become the best version of yourself? Are you doing the same for them?
  3. Look at who you are BEING – are you being a positive, future focused, can-do employee or are you dragging your feet, playing the victim and the whoa-is me game?

The answer to finding a good job is not one of location, circumstance, education level or occupation type, it is simply an act of choice. If you want a truly great job you have to be accountable and #startwithU.  

  • What are some of the things you can be grateful for in the role you have right now?
  • What are your top three strengths and how can you utilise them even more in your day to day work?
  • Who are your favourite people to work with and how can you spend more time with them?

May you love your work as much as I do! #startwithU


Heidi Alexandra Pollard xx

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Heidi Alexandra Pollard

As a workplace futurist and company culture hacker, Heidi Alexandra and her team are the secret super power for Australia’s most innovative cultures and brands. Heidi Alexandra created a simple model, called The UQ Powerhouse, that codifies what makes healthy, happy and productive workplaces for the future. She believes it is possible for businesses to balance people, planet and purpose with profit and that together we can end workplace bullying, depression, anxiety and suffering. Find out more at

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