Don’t let job title define you

Don’t let job title define you

We live in a structured society. Structured organization. We like predictability to our surrounding. It’s a wonderful thing to go to sleep knowing that you will be paid doing what you were doing today.

The boss likes it. The customers like it. Predictability is great for stability in business. It would suck to pay for an iPhone and get a drawing of an iPhone on a tissue paper.

Therefore, organization aligns job position with job title with clear job descriptions, stating clearly, “This is exactly what you will do in this job: 1. talk to people 2. talk to computer 3. work like you own the business but you actually don’t 4. participate in office politics 5. (I am running out of honest job description).

Then, we go into the job expecting that we will do exactly that. Any activities happening outside of that premise are considered as “not my business.” When reality of uncertainty clashes, everyone reacts differently. Some quit, some compromise, some draw clear lines of what they will do. All which are fine.

However, what’s best for you? Are the bullet points in job description all you CAN do? or are they all you WILL do?

What you CAN do at this point might be limited. What you consciously decide that you WILL do can become what you CAN do.

The more you CAN do the more options for you to choose what you WILL and WILL NOT do.

To put this in a context, in my previous job, the job title defines me as front-end developer.

I CAN do HTML, Javascript and CSS, but if I let the job description defines what I CAN do, the job would be boring and I can’t learn anything, because I am not exploring and experimenting.

Therefore, I decided that I WILL do backend too. Although what I CAN do in backend was limited at the time, the decision to do more than what the job asked of me allowed me to learn more skillsets and bring more values to the organization.

Today I will do what others won’t, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can’t

― Jerry Rice

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