How do some dream jobs become nightmares? originally appeared on Quora - the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.

Answer by Jennifer Ellis, Consultant and Attorney, on Quora:

I expect that dream jobs become nightmares for a variety of reasons, here are a few:

  1. Unrealistic expectations. People often go into a career thinking one way and finding that the reality is quite different. The biggest thing is that people fail to understand that all jobs have parts that we don't like. It is easy to expect a job to always be exciting and fun. Law is a good example. People see what they think the practice of law is like on TV, but the reality, as you well know, is very different. Every job has aspects that are boring.
  2. A bad supervisor. A bad supervisor can turn a theoretically wonderful job into hell very easily. That person may not give the employee good work, mainly giving them scut work. They may not train the person properly, expecting them to just figure it out, leaving them to flail. They may steal the person's ideas and give them no credit. They may attack the person behind their backs. They may just be a miserable jerk.
  3. Bad employees. We have all encountered the employee who is set on making everyone else's life miserable. If you are not careful and you get swept up in this person's world, they can make your life miserable. There are all kinds of bad employees, I am talking about the one who sets people against each other, talks about people behind their backs, tries to get them in trouble with the employer, basically makes work a nightmare for everyone they can.
  4. Bad employer. The job may look great on paper, but then once you start things aren't what you expected. The job description doesn't match the job. The employer doesn't recognize your work and never gives raises when they should, or bonuses when they should (depending on the type of work). The employer (or supervisor) is a bully. Environments are set from the top down. If you have a nasty, unappreciative employer, it will make your life unhappy at work.
  5. A bad attitude. Sometimes people just aren't self starters, don't know how to get the work done, can't take criticism, aren't willing to ask questions, aren't willing to do certain aspects of their job. This is when the employee has unreasonable expectations, but also, causes their own problems with their conduct.

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Published on: Jun 20, 2018