Last evening my wife and I enjoyed dinner and a show with actor, musician, Jeff Goldblum. I've always been a fan of the rather quirky Mr. Goldblum and he's managed to enhance every movie he's appeared in and that even includes the bad ones. However, the Hollywood star was having a ball last night entertaining guests and playing some cool riffs on the piano. I couldn't help think it must be pretty cool to do what you enjoy and even get paid for it.
Some years ago I sat in the corner office of a vice president and listened to his woes. I thought I was being called in on the carpet but all my boss wanted to do was vent about his job and how much he hated it. Another top executive was eagerly counting the years until he could retire. Clearly, these men had “climbed the ladder” and apparently they weren't thrilled when they got to the top. Why was that, I wondered? Didn't they have the greatest job in the world?
Decades ago, when the large entertainment company located in the San Fernando Valley was run by a different management, staffers seemed delighted with their jobs. One top executive really took his job to heart and when he spoke about the joy the company brought to people around the world, the gentleman actually began to tear up. He felt that deeply about his work and the company that employed him. I don't think the founder of the company would find that odd. In many ways, he felt the same way himself.
I guess you're wondering how the heck I would know that? Well, this lucky kid was able to spend time with the company founder, so I garnered my information firsthand while rest of you only read about it in a book. I learned the legacy from the men and women who created it, and I'll tell you this. Most thought they were privileged to work for this great company and as corny as it may sound, they knew they had the best job in the world.
My gag cartoon below pretty much finishes this column for me. Sadly, this is the way too many top managers feel about their job today…and that's a darn shame.