Other Duties As Assigned
"Other duties as assigned", have you heard that phrase before? If you have been looking at the job postings at all in the past several decades, you have probably seen it once or twice. It is a catch-phrase that they throw in there to pretty much say, we can have you do whatever we want whenever we want.
Forget the actual scope of your job or duties, anything we want can be assigned to you and you will be expected to do it. Unless you are "lucky" enough to work in a union shop, most of us are probably "at will" employees. That means sure, you can refuse to do the other duties they assign you, but in return they can also choose to kick you to the curb and find someone else to do the job. All with little to no recourse on your part because after all, you are an at will employee.
Don't get me wrong, being in the union isn't all rainbows and roses. That isn't what this post is about anyway, but it does give yous some protection from this sort of thing.
I work in education, so most of our employees are in some form of union or other. Then we have a few stragglers like myself who are considered "non affiliated". We are those at will employees. If you are thinking at will sounds more like replaceable, you would be totally right. We have virtually no protection from sudden firing shy of obvious discrimination or violations of our civil liberties.
Like many businesses, we have been struggling to hire and keep quality individuals in certain positions in our district. They are necessary positions that require a moderate amount of skill, so just putting a warm body in a chair isn't necessarily the best solution.
The fact is though, like many businesses who are trying to do more with less, that means a large number of responsibilities and duties get placed on a single person. In the past, that might have worked. People were loyal and happy to have a job. There was a lot more competition and people were okay with a work/life balance that skewed more towards work. That's not the case these days.
As much as I was raised in the generation where you did what you were told at work because your job is important and you need to keep it, many people in the current generation don't feel the same way.
I made a point at one of our administrative meetings the other day that we may need to consider leaving off the "other duties as assigned" phrasing from our postings. It's just not going to fly these days I don't think. People want a clear separation and defined lines between their work and home life. Unless they own their own business, but that is a different beast all-together.
It's honestly a bit crazy to me how the world has gone from employees bending over backwards to maintain their job and their employers approval to employers now doing the same just to retain workers. Many times the workers aren't even highly skilled but employers fight to keep them anyway because... I don't even know why, I still can't wrap my head around it.
What do you think? Are the days of "other duties as assigned" gone? Are you even familiar with that phrase or is it not as common as I think it is? Let's discuss some more in the comments!
Posted Using LeoFinance Beta