One of the things that makes Jewish Community Services (JCS) such a special place for our clients is our amazing staff. Many of our employees have been here for decades, and when that kind of longevity happens, there’s usually a reason why. We’ll let Administrative Specialist Harriet Shiffman explain in her own words.
By Harriet Shiffman
January was 32 years that I’ve worked for the agency. We’ve gone through a few name changes since then. Originally it was Jewish Family and Children’s Service, then Jewish Family Services and now JCS. Working at one environment for so long also means potentially having a few different executive directors. As a 32 year veteran, I’m on my fourth.
I came never having touched a computer and now I am not only able to use lots of different software, but I would not be able to function and wouldn’t want to function without a computer. I remember when the agency got its first Olivetti memory typewriter. That was a big deal in those days.
During my tenure I’ve had a number of supervisors. My job has changed – my location has changed – different buildings – different floors in the building. We all know that change can be difficult. I find that I generally need time to acclimate myself to my new surroundings. Once that happens I have always found that the new office, work or supervisor is equally great. Open thinking, desire to grow and change and a workplace that encourages this, has made these transitions a positive experience.
I love my current office, job, and supervisor. I love doing a bunch of different jobs – it keeps my work interesting. For example, mail merges and tables are two of my favorite computer tasks. I also like getting lots of wording to fit in limited spaces – it’s the challenges that are great. Several coworkers come to me when they want to know how to do a certain job which, of course, makes me feel good.
It’s easy to love a job when the agency is compassionate and the staff is like a family. When you get the accommodations to deal with life as it happens, you are more apt to keep doing the work for the agency and enjoy your job.
People say I’m lucky to love my job the way I do. I can’t imagine feeling any other way. I have mentioned a few items which are lessons learned in what makes an employee satisfied on the job and what keeps someone at an agency for 32 years! There is information out there about this very topic. A website called Fastcompany.com put together a list of the 5 things people who love their jobs have in common.
- They enjoy their coworkers.
- They know what’s expected of them.
- They make a real impact.
- They’re proud to work where they do.
- They feel recognized.
All of those points are true for me. I came to our agency when I had young children and now I have grandchildren. Life and the job are great! I hope to end my career at JCS but not for a very long time.
Harriet Shiffman is Administrative Specialist for JCS Therapy Services.
JCS provides a broad range of services that meet the diverse, multi-dimensional needs of individuals and families throughout Central Maryland. We offer guidance and support when you are seeking solutions for emotional well-being, aging and caregiving, parenting, job seeking, employers and businesses, achieving financial stability, living with special needs, and preventing risky behaviors. To learn more, please visit our home page or call 410-466-9200.