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Should You Choose to Accept It

Years ago I began to teach and train on assignment, not job. People looking for a job will eventually be disappointed in the outcomes. Team members, leadership, money, systems, structure, culture are things that frustrate most professionals in the workplace. As these become more cumbersome in the day to day, employees look for new opportunities in the marketplace. The job is a choice and there isn't always a vested interest in the sucess of the company.

An assignment is part of purpose. Assignments, like jobs, are for a certain time; however, they are related to our personal growth and maturity. Assignments force us to look at ways to impact an organization and its people. Who can I influence? How can I improve culture? What necessity can I invent? What mark will I leave? Every relationship in our life, from whom you marry to whom you employ is an assignment. If we do not look at these relationships properly, we will miss grand opportunities to build people and make a difference in their lives.

My first business client was a family that did very well in commerical real estate. They always paid on time, were thoughtful about me and my family, and the work was easy. I served them for 20 years and could have continued. In 2020, I realized my time with this client had come to an end. I had done what I could to build their business. I told the owner that I would sever our contract at the end of 2021 and help them find another consultant to replace me. Shortly after I left, the owner decided to sell all the company assets and retire. Had I remained, my contract would have ended anyway. I listened to my spirit and realized my assignment was over and it was time to move on.

I use the term "lifting" when discerning the end of an assignment. LIfting refers to an emotional connection you have to a person or group. The feeling of purpose isn't the same. You struggle to find ways to contribute to the work. Going into the office becomes a chore. Doing the tasks at hand are mundane. Your team members are wonderful people, but no longer provide you with the comraderie you shared. Physically you are there, but emotionally you have checked out. These are signs to let you know your assignment has ended or will be ending shortly. It is time to plan for your next assignment.

Many people look at the end of a year to evaluate their purpose for the New Year. Should I stay or should I go? It is not always about the money. It is evaluating my assignment and knowing it may be over. Sometimes we leave an assignment too soon or remain too long. In these cases we miss windows of opportunity devinely ordered for us to move into our next assignment with ease. Remaining comfortable in an assignment that has expired will cause some level of discontent over time.

As we move into 2024, let's focus on our assignments, how they benefit us and the people we serve. Our time is valuable. Let's make sure we are fruitful and fruit grows by doing the right things at the right time for the right reasons.

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