I was at an event recently at a company where several people were invited to just hang out and share a meal together. People intrigue me so I prefer to watch the room unfold at events. I overheard a lot of friendly chit-chat, your usual small talk and obligatory questions, but people seemed to genuinely be having a good time. I found myself smiling and nodding in approval at the company culture until the “what do you do here” question hit the air. It’s a fair question and usually innocent, but the response one woman gave was “Oh, I’m just the janitor.” As if the janitor is some position that isn’t important to the overall organization. Which of course led me to judge the organization and it’s practices. How could an organization make any position feel less valuable than the next? Where does that even start? Does it start at orientation, or just at company events? Does it come from the mission of the organization or the lack of acknowledgement of support staff?
Does it matter? I think it matters. I’ve heard plenty of professionals in our industry say “Oh, I’m just HR” or “I’m just a recruiter.” If you don’t respect/value your position no one else will either. Don’t “just” be something, you are more than that!!!