For many professionals, especially younger ones, finding the perfect job is probably the number-one thing running through your mind as you look to turn to the next chapter in your career. Granted, such a job may never exist (because, what really is perfect?) but you can get really, really close. From the moment you graduate college and if you’re still seeking a job, you’re probably thinking about things like a salary, room for growth, location and other things like that.
However, there is one important thing that should NEVER get looked over when you’re looking for a job, or even when you have one. That thing is being a part of a good working culture.
No matter how much money you make or wherever you live (Ooh, L.A.), if you aren’t happy with the work culture you’re in, then chances are you’re not going to be able to fully enjoy what you do. If you aren’t enjoying what you do, your performance can potentially be affected negatively as a result. In the four years I’ve been in journalism, I have worked in four different newsrooms as either an intern, part-timer or full-time employee. I have had my share of good days and bad ones at each location, too. Every time I’ve had a rough day, I would think about it, then I would get back on my horse and keep going. (For the record: My good days have historically outweighed the bad ones like a bajillion to one)
However, every time I reflect on the few ‘rough’ days I’ve had at work in Austin, I am always appreciative of the support I’ve always gotten from my colleagues at the Statesman. The working culture inside of the big, while building beside the Colorado River is a rare one. From the fun days in the newsroom, to the more serious heart-to-hearts with my peers and managers, I appreciate it all. I have been lucky to be around a group of people who care about me at a personal level, in addition to my growth as a professional. It’s something you’re not going to find easily, and I found it immediately with Cox Media Group (and TMJ4-Milwaukee, too). Once you find a good work culture, please don’t take it for granted if things don’t go your way on a particular day or week.
Life is a journey, and so is your career. Make sure you have a good team around as you embark on your voyage. Money comes and goes, but the people you meet and the memories you create throughout the years last forever. Invest in that.