Update from the Chancellor: How Menial Jobs Create Passion?
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24. May 2024

Update from the Chancellor: How Menial Jobs Create Passion?

Lately, the saying “When you love what you are doing, you will never have to work a day in your life” has been chasing me. Often linked to Confucius, this sentiment encapsulates my passion for higher education, despite its cliché nature. It’s the kind of advice that sounds idealistic, especially when dispensed by well-meaning relatives during our younger years. Yet, here I am, echoing similar thoughts, not to preach, but to share the valuable insight that discovering one’s passion isn’t just about finding enjoyment in the tasks at hand.

Take, for example, my first job as a dishwasher during an all-day wedding, where the non-stop workload made me question the efficiency of not using a professional dishwashing machine (invented 1850). This early experience sparked my initial thoughts on business efficiency and decision-making.

Years later, as an intern (unpaid) tasked with photocopying a 500-page book—a seemingly pointless and tedious job—I learned firsthand about resource allocation and the practicalities of workplace tasks.

These menial jobs played a crucial role in igniting my passion for management theory and business practicalities. Finding what truly interests us can often be challenging, especially in fields as vast as business. It’s not merely about engaging with easy or instantly gratifying subjects but about diving into a variety of experiences to discover what genuinely excites and motivates us.

Here are a few strategies I’ve found helpful in igniting and rediscovering passion:

•    Reflect on Activities: Identify what makes you lose track of time or brings you deep satisfaction.

•    Diverse Experiences: Engage in various classes, extracurricular activities, or internships across different fields.

•    Open Dialogues: Discuss your interests with peers and mentors to spark enthusiasm and gain new insights.

•    Assess Likes and Dislikes: Understanding what you dislike can be as revealing as knowing what you enjoy.

•    Identify Patterns: Pay attention to the topics you are repeatedly drawn to.

In business education, nurturing a passion is incredibly powerful. It prepares future leaders and innovators to tackle challenges with creativity and persistence. Remember the Munich ice cream maker who distinguished his business with unique, handmade flavors? Similarly, you can carve out your niche in the business world.

And if you wonder about the silliest task I’ve ever undertaken in my career? It was faxing 250 pictures to a boss who proudly shunned computers and email!

Embarking on this journey to find and nurture your passion requires patience and determination, but the rewards are a fulfilling career and life.

Remember, we’re not just studying business; we’re learning to infuse our passions into every endeavor we undertake.

Wishing you an inspired and productive month ahead.

Sunny regards,
Sascha Liebhardt