They say money is the initial and the most highly rated motivating factor when it comes to one’s work life, but I beg to differ. It might be for the rest, but for me, the esteem needs are the basic ones that need fulfillment, provided all possible instances except the one where you are dying for ‘roti, kapra and makaan’. Is it so easy to sell your self-respect in exchange for a monetary reward?
Anyhow, earlier this year, I have started working at the university that I attended as a post-graduate student. It cannot be denied that finding work is pretty hard and you are lucky if you are hired as soon as you complete your degree, but certain challenges still await you. This is the lesson learnt in the two successive semesters that I am going to present in a lighter tone.
Working at your home university really demands a lot, especially when your teacher becomes your boss and your angry class fellows remain your fellows if they get employed with you. Just be prepared to be handed over a course plan that takes you down the memory lane, to a class assignment where you were required to research everything on your own and there was never a room for questioning. The pressure to perform well is very much there as it used to be when you were a student, and exerted by the same person. The grudges they held against you in the classroom are taken to the office and all the formal meetings. You show them your work and if rather accidentally, you ever dare to perform exceptionally well, it is never welcomed with a ‘good’ or ‘excellent’ remark because how can it be possible that you being their once-student come up with a better idea? So no matter what quality of work is presented, you are advised a rework for it, so a solution would be to not do it the best in the first place; hence putting all your energy in the revised draft!
If you had ever argued with them in your student life, even though being right; it is very likely that you will pay its price throughout your work life. It will be revealed to your students, sooner or later, as your ex-teacher comes prepared with the feedback forms to be distributed among them, and asks them to be honest and open about how ‘this inexperienced instructor’ teaches them. Instead of having them to quietly write, it is turned into an oral conversation leading to your devastation inside and out. In addition, your envious classmates-turned-colleagues celebrate it every time your spirits are dragged down in a faculty meeting. So, a once expressive, friendly, jolly and lively person is now an extreme introvert devising suicide plans every single day.
If you choose to work at your home institution, your status will change on paper only. You will be treated as a student as long as you wish to stay, but it does not come without some pluses. Not all the instructors are stubborn in nature, some are simply a bit inflexible! Anyhow, they are the ones who make your journey better by helping you out. They will listen to you but don’t be sure that your ideas will be incorporated, because you are a baby who’s learning to walk and they are supposedly the one adjusting the walker for you. But a baby is baby and so, he needs to imitate, not initiate or reason. It’s high time that the difference between baby and newbie should be realized, as sometimes, an empty barrel can make a meaningful noise.