Update: This workshop is interactive! Access the accompanying worksheet here to prepare and use during the session.
How realistic is it to place a high value on meaning in career and work? Most of us need the paycheck, of course, but, beyond that, what are reasonable expectations from work? It is reasonable to embrace the idea of “being part of something bigger than myself,” but, not finding that at work, I can look for a new job or, perhaps, just hunker down, do the minimum to get by, and focus on meaning in other areas of life (family, hobbies, etc.).
Unfortunately, many people spend their work hours marginally engaged, watching the clock, and underperforming. And, while each of us needs to find strength and purpose within ourselves, leaders can make a huge impact.
Successful leaders instill a feeling of purpose in their employees, communicating why work matters, and aligning individual roles with the organization’s purpose. In their classic book Mastering Leadership, Robert Anderson and William Adams write, “If you lead from a deep sense of purpose, translate that into clear vision, and build alignment among key stakeholders (teamwork) in the realization of that vision, you are highly likely (.94 correlation) to be an effective leader.”
Employees need to feel their job has meaning, and this is among the strongest drivers of millennial retention. The most effective leaders create work environments with discretion, autonomy, respect, and learning so people can “find nobility in work.”
Doug Teschner served in the capacity of Country Director in Ukraine from 2010-2014 as well as in Burkina Faso, Guinea, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Morocco. He has built his career as a proven, results-oriented leader, mentor, coach, trainer and teacher embracing challenge, integrating vision with a passion for excellence, inspiring a higher level of personal and professional performance, committed to team building, leadership development, transparency, and quality communication. He currently serves as the President of Growing Leadership LLC to support nonprofits, governments, and businesses by partnering to strengthen their capacity to achieve the highest level of performance. Services include leadership training, coaching and mentoring; public speaking; organizational development and strategic planning; public policy support and legislative advocacy; resource development, communications and public relations; research and evaluation; health and safety; outdoor programming; international development; cross-cultural education; and diversity/inclusion.
About the Connections Program
The Connections Program has been developed to continue to provide mentorship and professional development opportunities for Ukraine RPCVs. The Connections Program will include both one-on-one mentoring and professional development events within our community, taking into account the unique challenges faced by RCPVs of color, LGBTQIA+ Volunteers, older Volunteers, and those belonging to religious minorities. The Connections Program will be open to all Ukraine RPCVs, regardless of how long ago you completed your service, to support one another as we go through relocations, changes in career, and other transitions.