[via Infragistics blog]
Jim Whittle, Director of Recruiting @ Infragistics, posted recently on the Infragistics blog about work and passion. The Two comments within his post really hit home. The first:
... I am confronted and amazed at how many people I speak with every day are just earning a paycheck
Sadly, you see this every day at every place of employment unless its a lean small business. I’m sure others get questions from these types asking why you seem to be always working at your job in one way or another. Some classify this as using your own money to buy books or magazines, code in your free time, or read up on the latest tech wrags. Some even get ticked at you because you seem to work harder than they do and thus, this puts you at a distinct advantage with your direct management, at times instilling the perception of “if this employee does all this stuff, why aren’t my other employees doing the same?”
I’ve been asked why I like my profession so much… usually it’s hard to explain to someone who’s not in my field and just doesn’t “get” our business. Quite frequently I give the one-liner “my job is also my hobby”. To others who are more interested in this stuff, I say that I love to build things and solve problems. I love the fact this line of business always changes and there are new things to learn. I love the fact that every day you hit a problem that demands a new way to resolve the issue.
In pro football (NFL), every few years you see a player who's debatedly reached the end of his career, yet he can't bring himself to retire. Most fans know of Dallas Cowboy QB Troy Aikman... at the end of his career, he didn't want to retire but repeated concussions forced him to walk away. However, for years the fire within raged and you'd see his name pop up every offseason or when a starting QB went down for the season due to injury.Every year, he wouldn't come back because he knew his time was up.... yet you could tell he would have taken the job and someone was having to talk him out of it every time. Why? Being an NFL quarterback wasn't just his job, it was his passion.
Then you have other instances like Detroit Lion RB Barry Sanders. He loved the game, and was at the top of his game, but finally it wasn't fun anymore when he saw year after year the Lions not make intelligent moves to better the team. Suddenly, he announced he'd walk away from the game, shocking everyone. You saw people call him crazy and many other things... but you could tell, the fire was no longer burning.
This is where Jim’s last paragraph really hits home… I completely identify with this statement:
Winning is fun as long as you have passion for the game your playing and the team your playing on. If you are not enjoying it, why play?