Is your work productive or boring? 6-minute guide to understand the work you are doing.

Whether you are working in tech, marketing, sales, hr, or in any business profile, there is a chance that your work can be divided into three types.  

Creative Work, operational Work, and support Work. 

Or in simpler words, it can be said that your work is consist of 3 types of work i.e. 

You Work = Creative work + Operational Work + Support work. 

If you are confused, let me clarify exactly what I mean by these three types of work.  

💻 Creative work – this is the kind of work when you are expected to be creative. It’s like working on something which doesn’t exist. 

For example, creating a strategy ( Growth, Launch, Marketing, etc.), or if you are working for sales, then developing a strategy to enter in new territory. 

One attribute of creative work is even your boss doesn’t know what exactly wants; he may end us giving you a scenario and wants a solution from you. So here, you will always be expected to come up with something new.

🖥️ Operation work – This is a kind of work where you expect to maintain an already established system. It mostly remains dependent on creative work. 

For example, someone has developed a strategy of hiring (Creative Work). It’s your responsibility to implement the strategy in practice (Operative Work) and make sure everything is according to the process until this strategy itself becomes obsolete. 

Here, no one expects you to come up with something new; instead, expectations are operative in nature just efficiently operate a predefined system. 

🖥️ Support Work – This type of work mainly helps keep operational work in place, this does not directly impact the business, but support work is necessary for operation work.

I am not saying your work will fall exclusively under one of these three types of work. It can be, but for most people, it is a mix of any two or three!.

Now let’s come to the most critical question, what do you earn after dedicating almost 1/3rd of your life to work?

If you think you earn money and the rest of everything, you can buy with it. Then you are probably not looking at it seriously.

Though you are partially right, I don’t believe you are entirely right in this as there are multiple things that one can earn in the job apart from money. 

Let’s list down everything.  👇

🖥️ Positive Earning  🖥️ Negative Earning 
✔️Money ❌ Financial Crisis
✔️Position ❌Hopelessness
✔️Influence/Impact ❌Aimlessness 
✔️Knowledge  ❌ No self-worth  
✔️Fame  ❌Anxiety, Depression  
✔️Peace of Mind ❌Frustration 
✔️Creative Satisfaction ❌Jealousy 

Just by going through the above chart, you will understand it’s not just money that you are going to earn there is more to it.

You must be wondering why I plug this chart in between when we were discussing three types of work.

There is a reason, behind it. If you look closely, to the chart you will realise that these earning are associated with the kind of work you are primarily going to do.

For example, it is very unlikely that you will achieve fame, money and creative satisfaction if your primary work is of support!

Now, I am not overtly generalizing it, but it is true for most of the cases.

That’s the reason, you should define what kind of life you want and what all are the things you want to earn apart from money.

Based on that choose the type of work!.

Now, it’s difficult to say that your job constitutes one of these three types of work. 

It can be possible but not always. 

But, what kind of work you are primarily doing depends on which work you are dedicating more than 50% of your time.

If from 100 hours of your work time, you are spending a minimum 50 hours on creative work ( i.e. 50%) then you are working in the creative work field. And this applies to the other two types of work as well. 

But, why is this important? 

I personally think that the kind of work you primarily do has a different impact on your life. 

There are some factors which are associated with only creative work or some factors which are associated with the operation and some which are associated with support work. 

Such as risk involved, peace of mind, kind of work pressure, learning opportunities and growth. 

Let’s check that in the below chart,  👇

Work Type Expectation  Risk  Learning Curve Pressure  Growth 
💻Creative Work Creative ⬆️High  ⬆️High  Creative Exponential 
👨‍💼Operational Work Maintain System  Moderate-High Moderate-Stagnant  Physical  Linear 
🛠️ Support Work  Help other two ⬇️ Low ⬇️ Low  Physical  Linear 

In my personal view, I prefer creative work more, and this assumption is based on my experience working in different organizations doing different kinds of work.

In my first job, I worked in the support domain; the issue with such a job is you always question your worth!. As no one give too much value to what you think! And there is always going to be a threat of Artificial Intelligence to such kind of jobs. As AI can easily replace support work!.

After my MBA, I worked as, Territory Sales Supervisor for one of the top tyre company. This job was more of an operational in nature.

The problem with operational work is the kind of pressure you will experience is “physical” and, again, here you will find very less value to your thinking!
( In short, less or no value to your brain )

Now I am working as a Digital Marketing Specialist; this is creative work. It offers me more creative challenges, working on solving real problems and, and job values my ideas as the cost of idea implementation is low! So it suits my nature.

So after judging all the factors, I assign the value to the kind of work we do as bellow.

Creative work > Operative work > Support Work

I am not sayings; it’s the final framework to judge any work or job.

If you divide your work into three-part (Creative/Operational/Support) and observe what part constitutes more in your job profile, you will have a clear idea of what work you are doing. Irrespective of the deceiving job title you have.

And please don’t go by job title 🙂

Most of the time, job titles don’t say anything about the work you are doing. It’s quite wired, but most MBA’s job consists of Operative Work, it hardly matters what their job title says. 🙂

People generally go after job titles and hefty packages sometimes that correlate with the kind of work you are doing, but this is not always the case.

Because it is quite possible that you can earn a lot of money working for a job focusing on creative work or operational work, two of these work types can give financial success.

But, this can’t be true for other factors you can earn from a job, for ex.—growth, learning cure, etc. Because the learning curve and all other factors vary depending on the work types.( Creative/Operational/Support)

If you want to control what kind of professional life you want in the future, you should probably give a thought to this concept.

P.S. ➡️ This blog is just a result of my idea regarding different work types, and I don’t consider it final. I will probably edit this in the future ( If I come with a better idea ). And yes, expecting your feedback.

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