At some point in time most of us have been through periods where we lose interest in our jobs or assignments we are involved in. This is only a problem if the lack of interest persists for more than a few weeks and noticeable changes in behavior occur. Here are 21 sure signs that you are losing interest in your job and that it maybe time to move on to your next challenge.
1. You no longer feel challenged in the work you are doing. It is either boring or of little interest to you and your only goal is to get it done as soon as possible, as opposed to doing the best job possible
2. You cannot concentrate on a particular activity for more than an hour or without first having a caffeine induced buzz. This includes getting easily distracted by other’s conversations or general office noise
3. You feel that you are always getting the crappy assignments and others in your team are getting the good ones. This could also be a sign that your employer is losing interest in you!
4. You cannot remember the last time you got a promotion, above average raise or a special achievement award, and you have stopped caring that you haven’t got one of these in a while
5. You get too work late and leave early for no real reason other than you want to minimize your time spent at work. Overtime is a painful word to you
6. You look forward to the social interactions at work more than the actual work it self. This is reflected when everyone comes to you for the office gossip and management gripes, and you are more than happy to discuss and complain about how bad the current conditions are
7. You feel that things have to be better elsewhere and that it is only your job/company that is bad. This is called the “Grass is greener on the other side syndrome”, and is rarely true, especially if this is the second or third job/company in a row that is making you feel this way
8. You spend more than 2 to 3 hrs a day on non-work related stuff like surfing the web for the latest McCain/Obama political news, celebrity gossip, blogging, stock trading, online shopping or on message boards
9. All you care about is your paycheck and not about professional growth, future projects or where the company is headed
10. You can’t be bothered participating in any after work related social or sporting activities. These are some of the best networking opportunities and committed employees make the time to go to these
11. You tune out in a majority of meetings you attend and can’t remember the last meeting where made a constructive contribution
12. You never volunteer for projects or activities that could mean extra work for you, but could also have resulted in recognition of your work by senior management
13. You blame office or organizational politics for everything that is bad in the company, and think that you could do things better but just don’t have the authority
14. You feel like everyone enjoys being at work, while you don’t and start resenting your colleagues who are doing well in their jobs
15. You only do enough work to get by and to avoid detection of your lack of interest
16. You actually look at the spam emails talking about made up jobs that look to be too true, like professional chocolate taster. All they want is your email and phone number, to put you on a master distribution list. This also extends to the excessive amount of time you spend on Linkedin or other professional networking sites, to see what your “connections” are doing. Networking is good, but not when it becomes your main activity while at work
17. You feel really depressed on Sunday evenings at the prospect of going to work the next day
18. You are only in your job because the economy is bad and so you justify to yourself that there is not point in looking for another job
19. You stop mentoring or helping junior colleagues and feel resentful of the fact they are trying to do your job without the years of experience you have
20. You take one or more sick days a month when neither you nor anyone in your family is really unwell
21. You have read this entire list a few times over and can relate to a majority (15+) of the items!
If you met the criteria for point 21, then it is time to start looking for a new job because you are in a rut with your current role and on your way to becoming a disgruntled employee. Either look within the company (if the issue is only with your current role/department) or for a fresh start look at moving to a new company. Don’t wait for things to get “better”, because in most cases they won’t. If you find the same signs have emerged in the past 2 to 3 jobs you have held, it could be time for a career or even attitude change. More on that in a future post.