Don’t Ever Say “It’s Not Part of My Job Description”

I stumbled upon this post in my Google Reader this morning Don’t Ever Say “It’s Not Part of My Job Description”.I agree with what the writer says in her given context. Of course when there’s opportunity to learn new things or gain experience to add to your learning curve, don’t hesitate to take the chance.

However, I think you will have to say "It’s not part of my job description" when it comes to circumstances like below:

Hang on for a sec. Disclaimer: my points explained in this post are my personal opinions which are based on my experience, observation and conversations with my friends/colleagues/ex-colleagues. These points are not to imply/refer to any specific employer/ex-employers of mine.

Alright, here goes:

1. You are required to do things from which you have graduated.
Say, you had spent 2 years being tossed around doing an entry-level job and now you hold a higher position with advancements & responsibilities, would you feel okay at all when you have to do some entry-level stuff again?

In reality, shit does happen and you are often needed to clear someone’s mess and you may end up getting your hands dirty to ‘help out’ or ‘just getting this thing out of the way’. I think it’s tolerable with a moderate dosage. However, if it suddenly becomes a fixed thing under your wings, i suggest you’d better speak out. (I will.)

2. You are required to do things that affect your current focus
Now that you have 43920493205243902 things in your checklist to do. For some reasons, one thing is screwed up and you have to shift your undivided attention to it and ‘help out’. Because of deadlines, of expectations, of pressures, this ‘help out’ thing has made you neglect other 43920493205243901 things and given you madness.

If the other 43920493205243901 things are as important as what your name is, i would suggest you have a frank discussion with your project mates and say it out. (I did.) Just make sure you are putting your interest in parallel with others’ and all solutions must be problem-solving-driven.

3. You are required to do things that another person with expertise can do those better and faster.
It doesn’t make sense when a web programmer is expected to come out with fancy copy for a commercial ad (well, some probably can do it … in Ascii or binary). Similarly, don’t get a number insensitive person to analyze the figures. The mess can just be messier.

Don’t fool yourself into these cliche "new things to learn" or "more exposure" or whatever shit you’re trying to persuade yourself. Maybe try it for a week, if things don’t work out the positive way, stop doing it already. If you can’t do it, you don’t do it. (Yea, I mean it.)

So, this helps?


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