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  • Writer's pictureMark Samuel

Managing Yourself: The Art of Job Crafting

Updated: Nov 16, 2023


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What Is Job Crafting?

You can make changes to your current job to make it more personally fulfilling by job crafting. This can involve taking on additional responsibilities, seeking new challenges, or altering your day-to-day tasks to suit your skills and interests better.


While job crafting is typically seen as a way to improve your career satisfaction, it can also positively impact your work performance. You can become more engaged and motivated in your work by tailoring your job to better match your strengths and passions.


This can lead to improved productivity, creative solutions to problems, and a greater sense of satisfaction with your career. Taking time to craft a job that suits your skills is essential if you feel stuck at work.


Why Is It Called Job Crafting?

In the 2001 paper “Relational Job Design and the Transformation of Work Self,” Amy Wrzesniewski and Jane Dutton developed the concept of “job crafting.” The term refers to altering one’s job duties and responsibilities to better-fit one’s skills, interests, and values.


While it is often up to individual employees to initiate job crafting, employers can also play a role by encouraging and supporting employees in their efforts. When done effectively, job crafting can lead to increased job satisfaction, motivation, and improved performance.


Also, it can increase employee ownership of their work and foster a sense of belonging. As such, job crafting can be vital for employees and employers.



The Job Crafting Model

In 2010, Maria Tims and Arnold B. Bakker further explored “job crafting” through the jobs-demands-resources model. This model suggests that people are more likely to succeed and enjoy their work if their job matches their interests.


The model has three key components: psychological, relationship, and task (we’ll discuss more in the next section). To maximize the benefits of the model, each element must be carefully considered and implemented.


For example, work tasks should consider an individual’s interests, skills, and values. At the same time, building relationships should provide opportunities for employees to learn new skills and advance in their careers. As a result, the Job Craft Model can help organizations create a more engaged and productive workforce when used effectively.


The Three Elements of Job Crafting

There are three primary elements of job crafting: task identity, relational job design, and psychological job design. Below we will discuss each aspect in more detail.


A New Mindset: Psychological Crafting

Psychological crafting refers to modifying job tasks to promote positive cognitive outcomes such as increased satisfaction and engagement. Typically, psychological crafting involves changing the structure or content of one’s job so that it better aligns with one’s strengths and preferences.


For example, naturally introverted people may take on more responsibilities that allow them to work independently. In contrast, someone who prefers social interaction may seek opportunities to interact more with colleagues or customers. Individuals can significantly impact their psychological well-being by making small changes to their work tasks.


Creating Interactions That Stand: Relationship Crafting

In job crafting, relationship crafting refers to the deliberate and proactive construction of relationships with others in the workplace. This may involve seeking out opportunities to build social capital, developing a positive rapport with co-workers and superiors, or cultivating a supportive network of colleagues.


Research has shown that employees with strong relationships at work are more engaged, productive, and satisfied with their jobs. Also, they are more likely to receive promotions and raises, and less likely to experience job burnout.


Building strong relationships at work can make your workplace more productive and positive. For these reasons, relationship crafting should be essential to any job crafting strategy.


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Reorganize Your Responsibilities: Task Crafting

Task crafting is a job design intervention encouraging employees to reframe their work tasks in order to increase their job satisfaction and motivation. The goal of task crafting is to help employees see their work in a new light, and to find new ways to approach their tasks that are more rewarding and satisfying.


In order to do this, employees are first asked to identify the core dimensions of their job that are most important to them. They then brainstormed ways to change their current tasks or add new tasks that would allow them to engage more with these core dimensions.


For example, employees who value social interaction might add networking and relationship-building opportunities to their work tasks. Using task crafting can increase job satisfaction and motivation across a range of occupations.


Is Job Crafting the Same As Job Design?

Job crafting and job design are both processes that can be used to improve employee satisfaction and productivity. However, the two processes have key differences between them.


Job crafting generally refers to the changes an individual makes to their job, such as altering their responsibilities or changing how they interact with others. By contrast, job design is usually carried out by management and involves making changes to the structure or content of a job.


For example, a manager might decide to add new tasks to a job or change the order in which existing tasks are completed. While both job crafting and job design can lead to improvements in the workplace, they require different approaches and strategies.


What are the Benefits of job crafting?

When you job craft, you take control of your career development and create a job that is more meaningful and satisfying to you. The benefits of job crafting are numerous:

  1. Job satisfaction and engagement increase can be achieved through it. Employees who have the opportunity to craft their jobs are more satisfied with their work and less likely to experience burnout.

  2. Job crafting can improve your performance at work. By aligning your job with your strengths and interests, you are more likely to be motivated and produce high-quality work.

  3. Job crafting can help you develop new skills and knowledge. When you change your job, you will inevitably learn new things along the way.

  4. Job crafting can promote career growth.

Making changes to your current position can open up new opportunities for advancement within your company or field. An effective career strategy with job crafting enables you to create a satisfying and successful career path.


What Are Some Examples of Job Crafting?

It’s really simple to make changes to your current job to fit your interests and needs. Changing your daily routine or taking on new responsibilities can be as simple as learning a new skill. Some common examples of job crafting include:

  • Identify areas where you can use your strengths and talents and find ways to use them more often in your job.

  • Brainstorm ways to make your job more challenging and interesting, such as taking on additional projects or responsibilities.

  • Finding ways to make your job more flexible, such as negotiating different hours or working from home occasionally.

  • Connecting with co-workers and building stronger relationships with them.

Job crafting can be a great way to make your job more satisfying and meaningful. By assessing what you like and don’t like about your current position, you can identify areas where you can make changes that will improve your overall satisfaction with your work.


How Can You Actually Implement Job Crafting at Work?

Here’s how you can take a few simple steps to get started making your job more fulfilling with crafting. As a first step, you should examine your current responsibilities and determine which aspects of your job you enjoy most.


Next, consider modifying your daily activities to make these elements more prominent.


For example, if you enjoy working with numbers, you might try to find opportunities to incorporate data analysis into your daily tasks.


It’s also a good idea to identify ways to use your strengths to improve your work performance. For instance, if you’re a people person, you might volunteer to train new employees or lead team-building exercises. The more you shape your job; the more engaging and satisfying it will be for you.



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