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Old 05-12-2019, 03:24 PM
 
Location: League City
3,377 posts, read 6,594,002 times
Reputation: 3983

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Liar_Liar View Post
To each their own.

If you are one of those people who can keep yourself busy with interests outside of work, that type of job would be a dream.
This right here. Agree 100%. Sometimes you may not get exactly what you want, but if you can still carve lot of contentment out with what you are given, then you are still doing good.

My last job and my current job would be considered cushy. I am -never- bored. If there is nothing to do at work (rare, but happens) then I read books and watch training videos about new technology that can help me out with my job. I actually enjoy that, and it keeps me up to date.

I could go find a more challenging job that would guarantee I am always busy, but I would give up a LOT of freedom, stability, autonomy, and ability to pursue the things I enjoy because I am not always burned out or taking home work.
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Old 05-12-2019, 05:40 PM
 
Location: HoCo, MD
4,343 posts, read 7,985,937 times
Reputation: 4756
I have been in that same situation you described - and the stress is mainly two-fold:
  1. This situation is unsustainable and that you may be let go at any time
  2. You aren't able to obtain the necessary skills to grow your career. Sure, you have all the time to learn new things - but learning and doing are different. Reading about AWS or even buildings things in a test environment is different from actually managing one (and employers are't exactly going to see that as "experience").

If I were fairly certain that 1 isn't an issue. 2 is likely not much of an issue either (depending on the phase of career I'm in). That said - the stress is real. I can't speak for your friend, but it's no different from having a dead end job.

Personally - I don't see these as a 'cushy' job - It's simply being underemployed. To me - cushy is having all the resources you need to address all the issues/problems thrown at you. But also having the necessary knowledge that you know you are needed.

This doesn't mean there is no stress. Stress is actually good IMO.
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Old 05-12-2019, 05:53 PM
 
Location: on the wind
7,092 posts, read 2,905,107 times
Reputation: 24004
Quote:
Originally Posted by SVTLightning View Post
That was stressful for the person in the OP? lol I don't think that person really understands what a stressful job is.
Frustration can be very stressful obviously. If someone feels unnecessary and unproductive, but have no power to change anything they can get very frustrated. If you are someone who doesn't feel fulfilled if you're not putting out fires, breaking new ground, tackling big complex problems a job like that could be very stressful.
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Old 05-13-2019, 05:12 AM
 
1,546 posts, read 399,556 times
Reputation: 2887
Quote:
Originally Posted by macroy View Post

This doesn't mean there is no stress. Stress is actually good IMO.
There is a difference between stress and having a challenge. Having a challenge is a good thing. Everyone needs a challenge in their work. Even in a hobby, if you were building a bird house or making a table, the challenge makes it interesting.
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Old 05-13-2019, 06:42 AM
 
Location: Wooster, Ohio
1,036 posts, read 785,471 times
Reputation: 1489
I met a man at a lab test who was entertaining the crowd. There were 3 well-paid people in his lab, and they split up the work so that each had 1 hour of work per day. He got bored reading library books, so he went back to school and earned a law degree.

The EPA inspected the lab, and told them they needed to do more quality control. Now they had 2 hours of work each per day. The EPA doubled their workload!

What if they had had 4 hours of work each prior to the inspection. Doubling the workload would keep them busy for 8 hours, with no time for breaks or a paid lunch. Also no time to do extra work or redo work if needed.

Things can get ugly quickly when the daily workload is increased. Thinking back over my lab career, whenever there was an extra project, it caused me to get behind in my other work. One of the reasons I retired is that I wanted to go out on a high note. I was concerned that if there was additional required quality control, I would not have time to do anything other than lab work. No time to clean, to pick up trash outside, to learn other skills, etc.
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Old 05-13-2019, 07:44 AM
 
85 posts, read 61,581 times
Reputation: 140
It would be stressful bc you know you don't have much value to the company and at anytime they can lay you off with no warning. To me it would be like sitting on death row.
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Old 05-13-2019, 07:45 AM
 
325 posts, read 394,663 times
Reputation: 671
If I was OP's friend, I would have made it a challenge to keep myself entertain and that would have been sufficient to keep the clock moving. Whether it's spending 7 hours finishing the NYT crossword puzzles, working on the hard version of Sudoku, working on a jigsaw puzzle hidden in my desk drawer, etc. But mostly, I would have used those times to go on interviews.

These days with my smart phone and WiFi, I'd probably work on a PhD LOL!
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Old 05-13-2019, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Weehawken, NJ
149 posts, read 168,266 times
Reputation: 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by DorianRo View Post
If you can take two hour lunches with no real responsibility, sounds like this position needs to be eliminated entirely. Never ceases to me amaze me how quick companies are to get rid of positions where people actually work and bring value but will gladly keep on countless layers of pointless management positions or these paper pushing up no responsibility type jobs where people can take 2-3 hour lunches
This depends on what you are doing... In my case I manage a satellite facility and our HQ is in Seattle, WA.....I have virtually no oversight except a monthly call to corporate to discuss any potential risks at my site. Other than that, I'm flying solo here with a team of 8 and I have streamlined the process to the point where I am only needed for maybe 1 hour per day. I could take advantage and only be in the office 1/2 day and go home or abuse it but I do not as I try to run this place as if I owned it.
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Old 05-13-2019, 09:37 AM
 
1,546 posts, read 399,556 times
Reputation: 2887
Quote:
Originally Posted by SirDrums View Post
It would be stressful bc you know you don't have much value to the company and at anytime they can lay you off with no warning. To me it would be like sitting on death row.
Yeah. Each time someone in management spoke with you, you couldn't help thinking, "This is it, they are getting rid of me". You figure it would be just a matter of time, there is movement in management, even a little and someone says they need to cut back and realize those 4 hours a week could be shared by two other people who aren't that busy, and you're gone.

And when you interview elsewhere you're going to have to grossly exaggerate what you did on your last job.
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Old 05-13-2019, 09:54 AM
 
7,375 posts, read 11,542,544 times
Reputation: 8174
Quote:
Originally Posted by macroy View Post
I have been in that same situation you described - and the stress is mainly two-fold:
  1. This situation is unsustainable and that you may be let go at any time
  2. You aren't able to obtain the necessary skills to grow your career. Sure, you have all the time to learn new things - but learning and doing are different. Reading about AWS or even buildings things in a test environment is different from actually managing one (and employers are't exactly going to see that as "experience").

If I were fairly certain that 1 isn't an issue. 2 is likely not much of an issue either (depending on the phase of career I'm in). That said - the stress is real. I can't speak for your friend, but it's no different from having a dead end job.

Personally - I don't see these as a 'cushy' job - It's simply being underemployed. To me - cushy is having all the resources you need to address all the issues/problems thrown at you. But also having the necessary knowledge that you know you are needed.

This doesn't mean there is no stress. Stress is actually good IMO.
This...

I will also say there are a fair amount of easy jobs out there, most of them just don't happen to pay that well.

When I was much younger, I had a very easy job. Pay was standard industry rate. There were literally days where I did 1-2 hours of work. I left that job because it was too easy, but the contract was disappearing anyway. In retrospect, I probably should have hung on a little longer.

Some years ago, I had a job that was busy but easy. 8 hours of work was literally 8 hours of work, but the work was very easy, and a lot of it was driving around, doing easy paperwork, interviewing people. Again, that contract disappeared. Pay was pretty decent.

The thing you have to realize is that at the end of the day, somebody is paying your paycheck. And if they wise up to how much they're paying you to sit on your arse, then you won't have a job much longer.

The caveat to this is, if it's the federal, state, or municipal government, nobody's pocketbook is directly being affected, and high paying easy jobs can be common.

At my current job, it's stress and long hours. You'd think it would be a no brainer to take an easy job, but it isn't.

I haven't given up yet on finding a meaningful job yet, but if I do, then something in between is probably best, not too easy, not too hard.
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