A group of Wake Forest staff from various departments within University Advancement gathered over lunch on March 17, 2017, in Alumni Hall on the campus of Wake Forest University to discuss career development.

We began by sharing stories of first jobs held, as well as favorite jobs held. We quickly realized that we shared some key reasons we enjoyed our first jobs:

  • ​The element of service.
  • The challenge the work brought.
  • The relationships we developed with both our work colleagues and the clientele.

We began a group discussion about the prospect of ​returning to our favorite employment at this point in our lives/careers, which led to the question of whether some members would be compelled to return to our favorite job after retirement? Two example​s​ ​that ​resonated with the group​ were examples of working at a deli and a movie theater. Both individuals enjoyed the work as well as the satisfaction they felt after serving customers. This exchange led to a conversation about ​how people are the key to making a good job a great one.

The conversation concluded with each of us sharing what we would take away from the conversation. Some clear themes emerged:

  • ​There was a better appreciation for work colleagues – listening to each other’s past experiences brought depth to the people we see every day.
  • ​There was a better appreciation for all aspects of a job – good and bad​.
  • ​Working together, as a team, creates a whole that is bigger than the parts.
  • People and our relationships with them can have an impact on all aspects of our lives​.