Happy Hour as a Career High

Posted by on Dec 4, 2010

Friday night happy hour is only an event because you were supposedly unhappy in the preceding hours at your work. Organizational theorists, business consulting gurus and all the Seth Godin’s of the world could supplement their next best seller with a happy hour at the Pfister.

Tonight’s crowd ran the gamut in examples of the intersection of work and life. John and Kathy (who you’ll meet again in another post) made a life together around job relocation. After I asked, “So you moved seven times for work?” Kathy eagerly reminded me, “Oh, no, honey, eight times!”

John and I wax philosophical on an issue I’ve been thinking about for some time. Contemporary workplaces no longer keep you for 35 years. John got lucky and built an entire career within one organization. Moving up through the ranks, moving with the company and seeing the country (Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York), John and his family proudly traveled for their kin—the company.

Now, John agrees, workplaces and the new generation of workers have to revision what it means to be loyal.

Just as John and Kathy head off to continue their anniversary celebration (45 years!), Dave and Julie take their seats and are the living, breathing example of just what John and I had been discussing. Both lawyers by trade, together they’ve moved from Seattle to Denver to Milwaukee with their careers, but not their company. And though regulars at the Pfister, they were in tonight to court an interviewee on her quest to be a part of a Milwaukee-based company. Potentially hiring in from Denver, their guest had already finished the stress of the day’s interview with Dave, but because she was spending the night in town, the pair offered to keep her company with a drink…at the Pfister.

It’s true so much of our life is our work life. John and Kathy now travel to visit work friends—not for work. Dave and Julie continue to remake their life based on where they work and between them, now, is this potentially new Milwaukee resident experiencing the Pfister for the first time because of work she hopes to get.

It’s inspiring to be around folks at mid-career, at retirement or as they shape their career…and to get all this coaching and career advice while hearing holiday tunes on the piano and the rumble of giggles and small talk as office work parties commence in the lobby and the Rouge Room.

Career coaching is available to you while you sit in the Pfister lobby, but the most important thing you’ll learn is that that our happiest hours may very well be because of our work and we should find the ways we can make our work work for our life.

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