Working in an Office: Is it as miserable as people say?


photo from flickr by Eryu Guan

By Julia Pfau, Perspectives Editor

We have all said it or heard it: “I don’t want to end up working in a boring office job!”

But why not? Maybe because it’s the sedentary lifestyle that is often linked to it. Or maybe because the work itself is seemingly simple and uninteresting. This poses the question: are offices really as dreadful as people say?

“I would rather have any other job than one in an office. I hate the idea of sitting in a boring office all day,” sophomore Hannah Therese said. “It would be dreadful, I need scenery and an interesting workload.”

Looking out your car window, you may notice the “office buildings” in the area. Chances are, you might end up working in them too.

From sales management to video games, not every office is quite the same. Others are involved with advertising and marketing, computer developments as well as research and medical purposes. The list goes on.

According to the Conference Board, 53 percent of Americans working sedentary careers don’t enjoy their current work. One is more likely be content and engaged in their work if they entered an office affiliating with their field of interest.  

Offices consist of many positive amenities: an air-conditioned and heated environment, free access to a kitchen and little manual labor. Employees also work few hours, from nine in the morning to five in the afternoon.

However, there can be downsides. A Career Builder study reveals that two in five employees have gained weight in their most recent office job. Although office workers can maintain their physical fitness at home or the gym, sitting down at work all day can lead to restlessness and lack of physical activity. Other environments, including hospitals, construction sites, and the domains of law enforcement, benefit workers with more exercise and a change in scene.

Working in an office gives you the opportunity to create close bonds with your coworkers. Spending hours sitting next to each other, attending meetings and chatting at lunch gives office workers the luxury to become close friends. Other fields that require more physical activity leave less time for getting to know people at work.

Office workers will eventually develop a routine to stick to. This consistency gives a feeling of balance and content. Having the same hours and type of workload allow you to steadily develop experience.

In the end, an employee’s enjoyment of working in an office depends on how much he or she enjoys the field and environment. Just as a job of running around or working manual labor can seem like a nightmare to some, an office job can look the same way to others. With close friendships and a passion for your work, an office job can be just as enjoyable as any other.