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402 days. 402 (plus or minus… mostly minus) posts.

Tag: good

Day 138: What to Expect from Your Job

In my three decades on Earth, I feel really lucky to have had many different jobs in many different fields. I’ve been a grant writer, catering server, adjunct professor, administrative assistant, marketing manager, barista, hotel sales coordinator, yoga instructor, writer, production manager, cleaning lady, lighting designer, babysitter, stage manager, DJ (not so great at the DJing, as it turns out), program coordinator, sales associate and research assistant. Right now, I’m a contract content producer (and I love it).

My history gives me what I’d call a pretty well-rounded perspective on what makes a good job. So here are eight things you should expect from your place of employment:

1. Challenges. Tiny ones, quick ones, long ones and gigantic ones. If you’re not being challenged, your brain is probably dying.

2. Like-minded people. People who understand your satisfaction with a beautifully organized Google doc (for example), and who can empathize with you when things aren’t going quite right. These people keep you grounded.

3. Different-minded people. People who are able to look at a situation from angles you didn’t even know existed and pull metaphorical rabbits out of metaphorical hats. These people keep you on your toes.

4. A way for you to move around and not sit or stand in the same place all day long. Whether it’s a nice outdoor space or a mobile indoor situation in which you can work wherever feels productive, good jobs let you move.

5. Good tea and coffee. And some healthy snacks. Simple pleasures make a big difference.

6. Quiet space where you can focus without distraction. It’s important that you’re able to plow through a problem or a project uninterrupted when you need to.

7. Distractions. Being able to adapt and switch gears based on the needs of the people around you is an important skill that will serve you in all areas of life. You might as well hone it at your job.

8. Laughter. You should be skeptical of anyone who wants to be serious for eight or more hours straight. Human beings are built to laugh.

Happy jobbing.

Day 108: Good Names

In honor of all my friends who are welcoming new pets and/or kids into their homes, here is a list of names that work well for both.

I can’t take 100 percent of the credit for this list because my dad came up with some of these. And if it weren’t for my mom, one of my sisters would quite certainly have been named Adobe. For now, it’s still up for grabs. You’re welcome.

Good Names for your pets or kids:

Brian Boitano (taken)
Cal (short for Calzone)
Gandalph (yes, with a “ph”)
Lisa Loeb
Thing 1
Thing 2

Day 101: Good Design

Thank goodness for good F/A’s (friend/accountants). I had a tax appointment with mine today and I left it impressed by his efficiency and depth of knowledge, and baffled by the fact that he seems to really enjoy accounting.

Towards the end of the appointment, I asked for some advice about a couple of my dormant retirement accounts from previous employment. Our conversation confirms why good graphic design is so important to each and every business (especially investment firms). As a relatively intelligent person and admittedly undereducated consumer, I must represent at least some part of the desired investment population.

Here’s how the conversation went:

Me: “So is there any benefit to combining those two 401(k)s into one account?”
F/A: “Probably not right now, unless one is performing better than the other.”
Me: “Well, one of them has nicer-looking graphs in their materials.”
F/A: “Like, the line goes up?”
Me: “Hm. There’s no line. I think I mean that the pie charts look nicer. They’re really clean.”
F/A: “That’s good, but you might want to look at the graphs.”
Me: “Yeah, ok. I’m sure the graphs look nicer too.”