It has come to that time of year again, when some of us come to ritually attempt to make sense of our lives; this is the time of new years resolutions. This year I have been churning over something, I am turning 40 in May and I have identified something that has become a trend in my life.
I am a job-hopper.
In the name of self development, I have decided to colour code my experiences. Green is good experiences Orange is average and Red is pretty awful
- Mechanics assistant (working with my dad) p/t (3 years helping)
- Work experience: Gough and Gilmore Mechanic (weeks)
- Alround Auto Electrics -Auto electrician apprentice f/t (4 years)
- Ingrams Townsville PTY LTD -Parts Interpreter f/t (1 yr)
- Gibsons Auto Electrics-Auto Electrician f/t (10 months)
- Sunnyside Auto electrics- Auto Electrician f/t (5 months)
- Frames Auto electrics- Auto electrician p/t (2 months)
- Cooranbong Auto electrics-Auto electrician f/t (5 months)
- Enfield Auctions- Production Auto electrician f/t (6 months)
- Straitfield Auto electrics p/t (1 month)
- Charlestown Auto electrics -Auto Electrician f/t (2 yrs)
- NRMA roadside -Auto Electrician p/t (3 yrs)
- Mountain ind- Yard hand and mechanics assistant p/t (2 yrs)
- Stationmasters cafe-Kitchenhand p/t (4 months)
- Editor student newspaper p/t (experience) (1 yr)
- handyman magazine -editoral designer p/t (6 months)
- Powerdown s– IT admin and graphic designer f/t (1 yr)
- Bimbadgen estate winery -Graphics designer f/t (1 yr)
- Volgrens -Production Auto electrician f/t (1.3)
- Downer EDI -Production Auto electrician f/t (3yrs)
- Westrac f/t auto electrician f/t (3 months)
- Varleys f/t ( 3 months)
- Periodic IT work JavIT / ACT logistics p/t (2 years)
- Kia / Subaru Bradstreet Car salesman f/t (6 months)
- Samsung brand ambassador salesman p/t (5 months)
- Ebay sales advisor: cash converters f/t (1 month)
I sometimes struggle to make sense of this mess, many of the jobs listed here no longer exist. Vast workshops packed full of eager trained workers now lay empty, whole steelworks that once thrived with industry are now desolate empty wastelands.
My career roughly goes like this : Left school at 16, did Trade in Auto electrics, decided after long period disliked it. Trained to be a graphic designer gained a diploma and a degree. Worked for a short period as a designer and enjoyed it and then returned to a lucrative manufacturing sector in the middle of the mining boom, mining boom eventually wore out and lucrative jobs dried out, and was forced along with many others into the retail sector and the world of money.
Other sectors in my life have remained relatively stable. Like the place in which I live in my home town in Newcastle. Staying put in one spot is also a sort of explanation for all the jobs, instead of following the tide of work all over the country I have stayed in Newcastle because I love this town and my house that I purchased here.
These changing experiences have promoted a great deal of self analysis, I am more philosophical about work in a sometimes negative way.
I have started to ask real questions about the relative nature of work, how it’s structured, why our system always seems to create these similar situations in workplaces.
For a long time I fooled myself into thinking that low paid jobs, minimal wage jobs the employers did not expect a huge amount from people, that the wage said everything and that things would be a little cruiser in those positions.
This turned out to completely false, that many of the lowest paid staff are treated like privates in the army, if one falls out of line then they get screamed at so all the others are frightened not to fall out of line, I didn’t expect that on the bottom rung at all.
Sometimes in the jobs that I have had I have seen workers laugh with joy, enjoying their job and working with their fellow comrade. They like the company and the job.
Yet many bosses treat this situation with utter suspicion and distrust. It seems that it is his job to impose his will on people and make them unhappy.
How can this be, that we are locked in a situation where nobody can ever be happy in their job, Is it because it is one persons job to make sure they are unhappy, or maybe they worry they are not working all the time because they are happy and laughing?
It is always a running joke in many workplaces ‘Don’t be happy at work, you will get in trouble’
People laugh, yet I always think. They said that in the last workplace too..why?