Job crafting: a guide for redesigning joy back into your job

Feeling stuck in a role can be draining. It can rob your work of joy and give you a sense your career isn’t progressing. It can also feel like leaving or making a radical change is the only option which might fuel a sense of being trapped – but job crafting gives you an immediate release and another way of building back the excitement, freedom and fulfilment in your work.


What is job crafting?

Most modern workplaces offer the opportunity for increasingly taking control of your professional destiny by crafting your work. Job crafting involves reshaping and redesigning your role within an organisation to better align with your personal strengths, interests, and values. This proactive approach to work can empower you to enhance your job satisfaction, engagement and overall well-being.

The core idea is that your job is not a fixed task list – see it as made up of a range of tasks, relationships and ideas, almost all of which can be reduced, amplified, added to, removed or re-framed.

There are three components to the art of job crafting focusing on how to shape tasks, relationships, and the psychological framing to create a fulfilling professional experience.

1. Task crafting: shaping your responsibilities

Task crafting involves modifying the specific duties and responsibilities associated with your job to better suit your skills, preferences, and career aspirations. It can be useful to let go of any sense that crafting your tasks is akin to giving up. It’s just a smart way of allowing you to do more of what you love whilst giving others the chance to do the same.

Here are some strategies for effective task crafting:

Identify strengths and interests: Begin by conducting a self-assessment to identify your strengths, skills, and areas of interest. What tasks energise you? Where do you excel? Use this insight to determine which aspects of your current role you'd like to amplify or reshape.

Seek opportunities for growth: Look for opportunities to expand your skill set and take on new challenges within your current position. Volunteer for projects or initiatives that align with your interests and allow you to develop professionally.

Collaborate and delegate: Explore ways to collaborate with colleagues and delegate tasks that are outside your core competencies. By leveraging the strengths of others, you can streamline workflow, foster teamwork, and focus on activities that best utilise your talents.

2. Relationship crafting: cultivating meaningful connections

Relationship crafting involves nurturing positive interactions and building strong connections with colleagues, managers and other stakeholders within the organisation. Here are some tips for effective relationship crafting:

Build a supportive network: Surround yourself with colleagues who inspire and challenge you to grow. Invest time in building authentic relationships based on trust, respect, and mutual support. Create opportunities for collaboration and celebrate shared successes.

Foster mentorship and sponsorship: Cultivate relationships with mentors and sponsors who can provide guidance, advice, and advocacy as you navigate your career path. Seek out individuals who have expertise in your field and demonstrate a genuine interest in your professional development.

Network strategically: See networking as a legitimate career activity and do it in a way authentic to yourself. Take a proactive approach by seeking out opportunities to connect with individuals who share your interests or can offer valuable insights and support. Attend industry events, join professional associations, and participate in networking activities both online and offline.

Be interested in others and ask them about their stories, you never know where this might lead.

3. Psychological framing: shaping your perspective

Psychological framing involves reframing how you perceive and interpret your job, focusing on the meaningfulness, autonomy, and impact of your work.

Here are some strategies for shaping your psychological framing:

Find meaning: Reflect on the significance of your contributions and how they align with your personal values and aspirations. Identify aspects of your job that bring meaning and fulfilment, whether it's helping others, solving complex problems, or making a difference in your community. Take time to identify the real purpose of what you do and how you might achieve more of that.

Cultivate autonomy: Ownership of your role by seeking opportunities to exercise autonomy and make decisions that influence your work outcomes. Advocate for flexibility in how you approach tasks and projects, allowing for experimentation and innovation.

Embrace growth mindset: Adopt a growth mindset characterised by resilience, curiosity, and a willingness to embrace challenges and learn from setbacks. View obstacles as opportunities for growth and development; take an experimental approach to your work and see what works and what you learn in the process.

Embracing the art of job crafting and making it real

Job crafting offers a powerful framework for you to proactively design and shape your professional experiences. By strategically crafting tasks, cultivating meaningful relationships, and shaping your psychological framing, you can rediscover the love for your role, or open doors to a new one which better aligns with your strengths, values and personal sense of meaning.

If this sounds abstract and theoretical, working with a coach trained to help you walk through these steps is a great way to bring it to life.

The journey of work can be demanding and sometimes having an objective and experienced partner acting in your best interest is needed. This is where a trained, qualified and experienced coach can be useful to help you gain clarity and take the steps you need to craft your way to a happier career.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Life Coach Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Farnham, Surrey, GU10
Written by Gary Armstrong, Pinnacle Coaching and Development
Farnham, Surrey, GU10

Gary Armstrong helps people who are stuck to find joy, fulfilment and high performance. He uses coaching and consulting to help people become clear on their purpose and goals and make transformational shifts in how they achieve them. He especially enjoys working with early to mid career professionals looking for deeper career meaning and purpose.

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