Security or Significance? Choose.

Here’s an article which will probably both ring true with you, and disturb you at the same time.

The essential point is, an awful lot of people, in an awful lot of walks of life, seem to find themselves doing work that is peripheral, or completely disconnected, from what they value, and from what they thought their employer was all about.

And it leaves them feeling worthless, unvalued, unhappy, even ashamed.

They do it because it keeps them alive, and it provides enough income.

The world of traditional aerospace, being by its very nature traditional, conservative, and bottom-line-oriented, is no exception.

It is therefore worthwhile asking oneself the following question then, no matter what stage in your life and career you find yourself:

Which matters more to me: Security? Or significance?

Because if security (of lifestyle, income, schedule, etc) matters more, you had better have some tolerance for doing work that you don’t value. For at least some of the time.

Conversely, if significance matters more to you, you will have to keep your wits about you, and be prepared to take bold action when required.

Because the inevitable trend is towards work that is dull, commoditized, and security-oriented.

The action you will need to take will include refusal to do work that doesn’t matter to you, or to the people you care about.

That’s risky, of course. Security goes out the window, at least for a while.

Though if you stick to your guns, in the long run, security might come back in the front door, and you get the best of both worlds.

Whatever the case, ask yourself the question. And choose.

One thought on “Security or Significance? Choose.”

  1. It’s hard to find a talking point from the original argument as that requires some degree of disagreement with the tenets or the conclusion. The article doesn’t give much scope for that, ergo – nothing to debate.

    Phrase the issue in a way to make it clear you’re one among many trying to climb Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maslow's_hierarchy_of_needs) and we’re back to the question you’ve phrased above. It’s personal now.

    ‘Significance’ is related to Esteem and Self-Actualization which are obtained at the higher strata of the triangle. ‘Security’ relates to Safety. With this in mind it’s hardly surprising that few risk security for significance. So what are the opportunities for achieving both?

    Flippantly, from my own ambition to be rich, lazy and fat, so far I’ve only achieved the fat bit.

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