I read a column in the New York Times last Sunday, called the “Workologist”. Readers write in questions about work problems. This week, a reader described a co-worker as a “narcissistic, selfish, and terrible manager”. He tried confrontation, but when that didn’t work, he attempted to make friends with her. She didn’t respond well. Frustrated, he finally went to her boss—no help there either. He is ready to look for another job, but in this job market, it won’t be easy. He wants to know what to do.... Read More
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It seems like every day I run into someone who doesn’t take care of themselves. This has become an epidemic, and I believe that it has dire consequences for our bodies, our minds, and our spirits.
Jodie works for a small company in the marketing department. She has worked there for 5 years and feels that she deserves a more substantial raise. Her boss tells her how the bad economy has impacted their business but she is starting to feel resentful and angry. Why doesn’t her boss see how hard she is working and what a great job she is doing?
Mary and Sarah, recently married... Read More
In 2013, this topic continues to be a source of debate and discussion. It’s not hard to figure out why. In the hey days of the early 2000’s, when the economy was soaring, many high powered Moms, working 60 hours a week, just threw down their laptops and said—“Enough! I can’t take it anymore!” It was just too hard to balance a big job (lawyer, doctor, or business executive) with taking care of two or three young children. They were fried. At that time, there was a lot of media attention given to this group of women that left their jobs to be able to see their children off in the morning, be... Read More
Occasionally, I hear providers harken back to the “good old days” when they worked at The Everett Clinic ten, fifteen, or twenty years ago or more. They say-- “In those days, I had more control over my work life, more respect from my patients, and spent less time at work”. They compare the “good old days” with today, where they feel less in control of what they do, how they do it, and more accountable for what they do.
This autumn, I will have worked at The Everett clinic for 20 years. When I look in the mirror, I think to myself—“That guy looks just like me, but older!” I have... Read More
Organizational psychology studies how to fashion work so that employees will enjoy it and want to keep doing it. Recent research has focused on how to encourage employees to feel “engaged” with their work and the company they work for. Engaged employees are more likely to be creative and innovative, which is especially important in our rapidly changing economy. At The Everett Clinic, where I work, employee engagement is so high that our organization has been selected by Fortune magazine as one of the top 100 companies to work for in the United States three years in a row.
What is... Read More
Mary is always worried about living up to other’s expectations. She doesn’t want to disappoint her friends or frustrate her family. She feels a strong sense of obligation to meet the needs of others—even when she doesn’t really want to.
Her co-worker needs someone to cover for him; Mary is quick to say “yes”. Her friend needs a ride to the store, and she says “sure”. Her Mom asks her to help with a sewing project and she says “okay”. Sometimes she feels burdened by all of these obligations. When others ask her for a favor, she almost always agrees to help.
On the one hand,... Read More
The other day, another health care provider and I were talking about the challenges of our work. She was going through a hard time in her career. In this changing world, working as a doctor, nurse practitioner, physical therapist or a counselor can be difficult. We have high expectations of ourselves, and so do our patients. Sometimes it can be hard to live up to our own expectations. We can be pretty hard on ourselves.
Our conversation made me think about what I really appreciate about being a health care provider. I know it is very popular for workers to complain about their work... Read More
Every day in the United States, 10,000 baby boomers turn 65. No wonder we are all hearing about friends and family that are retiring or at least talking about it.
I have several friends that recently took the big step. One friend, who worked for the state of California for almost 30 years, was growing frustrated with his job. Deciding to retire was easy for him. He told me—“Some people worry about falling into a deep depression after they retire. I am expecting to fall into a deep elation!”. As far as I can see, his expectations have been met!
Another friend recently... Read More
Last week, I attended an open house for employees of The Everett Clinic of our new facility in Smokey Point. I have worked at the Clinic for almost 20 years, and this is one of our biggest projects. It’s an amazing building, incorporating many exciting new ideas in streamlining and improving the patient experience through a new design. But what really impressed me was the pride that the employees displayed as they walked through this shiny new building. This feeling of pride, excitement, and enthusiasm among our staff was palpable. For me, it was this shine that moved me, more than the... Read More