The Australian Young Christian Workers are collecting worker stories, to define what work culture is for young people.
The AYCW National Campaign, ‘Our Space in the Workplace’, allows young people to recognise their own workplace culture and to take positive action regarding culture in their workplace.
The stories you provide will be used as a stimulus across Australia, to allow other young people to reflect on their own stories. The objective is to use these stories to gain even more stories, so that we can meet our target of 300 stories from across Australia.
Once these 300 stories are collated, the AYCW will create a Statement at our National ROLWA Gathering in Sydney in July, which will describe the themes across the board and what culture in the workplace looks like for young people between 18 and 30 years of age.
To give you an idea, we’ve come up with some themes that might resonate with you, but don’t feel limited by them – we want to hear any experience you have of work culture.
- Work, life, faith balance
- Job security
- Financial security
- Workplace relations with co-workers and supervisors
- Recognition and appreciation of work
- Joy in work
- Conflict resolution
- Technology – being contactable 24/7
- Fair pay
- Casual work
- Relevance of work to studies
This is a story about work culture from a YCW member in New South Wales:
I work at a fast food store, kind of as a jack of all trades, working at the front counter, burgers/drive thru and cooking. I’ve been working there for 5 years in November and in that time I’ve seen the culture at my work change and develop. Employees here are like a mini family of sorts, we all know each other well, entertain each other through busy shifts and scoialise outside of work at times. Because the age range of my colleagues is very close (between 15-30, mostly around 17-20), we get along well with little/no dramas in working. The actual work we do is quite hard, particularly when you look at the number of tasks we do versus the amount of pay we receive (I swear it’s just on the minimum wage). Some tasks require more ‘heavy lifting’ than others (e.g. lifting bins, cooking 48 pieces of chicken at a time) and others require particular attention to customer service and satisfaction.
Despite the hardship and little pay, we employees get a lot of support from our managers and have opportunities to build up skills. In my high school study, for example, I was able to complete a Cert II in Retail Services, which contributed 2 units towards my ATAR in Year 12. Currently I’m training to become a shift supervisor (having the option to complete to Cert III) and getting a lot of support from my training manager, restaurant general manager, area manager and the rest of the store. Because I’m also studying at university, I do get some leeway in training, getting days off as needed.
Overall I really enjoy this work culture despite its faults. We all work as a team regardless of the background, treat our customers well, work to the best of our ability, recognise each other and support each other when we’re feeling down. I even get to hug my managers, how cool is that?!
So, over to you! We would love you to tell us in about 250-500 words – what is your experience of work culture? Please include your first name, age, gender and location, and let us know if you would like to remain anonymous. Either email firstname.lastname@example.org or follow the link to Survey Monkey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/H8N397M
By submitting your story to the AYCW, you are giving permission for your story to be shared amongst leaders of the YCW in preparation for our National ROLWA Gathering.
Please direct any queries to our National Secretary, Eliza Cruse, at email@example.com