Reasons To Consider Working The Night-Shift
By Fahd Pasha
One-in-four employed Canadians work shifts, and one-in-five is engaged in nighttime shift work, according to The Workers Health and Safety Federation of Ontario. Firefighters, flight attendants and factory workers are just some of the professionals who’re working the so-called dreaded “skeleton shifts” or “graveyard shifts”. Night shifts exist to save and protect lives, but also in response to the desire for a 24/7 access to services in our society.
With this round-the-clock operational style, many companies require talent to stay available for the increasingly demanding and globally oriented customer. This may present an opportunity for you. And, despite the potentially negative connotation, there are some great opportunities that may be at hand if you choose to pursue a role that keeps you awake when many are asleep.
So before shunning away the next job posting that reads “night shift”, here are four reasons why it might be worth considering a career and growing your skills in a nocturnal role – even if your work occurs at atypical hours.
You get to work more carefully and thoughtfully
During the day, you may be distracted by the comings and goings of colleagues or workplace gossip being thrown around – but working at a quieter time of day can help stimulate concentration. For example, an individual working in production quality inspection, and with hazardous or corrosive materials, the opportunity to focus and give your complete attention becomes more possible in the night shift.
You play a vital role
At many points of a 9-to-5 life, you are probably one of many team members working in unison (which is great). However, at night, the stakes change completely – people count on you. For instance, in a hospital, you and a handful of colleagues might be the only ones around attending to patients. At a time when people are concerned, you have the chance to provide them with assurance and make them feel at ease. Not only that, but by proving you can handle high-pressure situations, you are in a prime position to showcase your employer that you can work independently and lead.
You can enjoy more autonomy
One of the many reasons people cite choosing to work nights is greater autonomy. At night, there may be fewer people working with you. This allows you to make more decisions and show your leadership skills. For example, in manufacturing facilities, teams often focus on continuous improvements to the production process in order to save costs. Through working alone, you have a better chance to test out new ways to build items at a low cost. By doing so, you are giving yourself the opportunity to climb up the ladder. Plus, it’s easier to be the star when there are fewer people out there fighting for the night shift!
You may make more money
There is no point sugar-coating it: most people likely don’t get excited at the prospect of working ‘odd hours. It’s plausible to assume that workers choose the night shift for monetary reasons. Most workplaces, from factory workers to delivery drivers, pay their employees some form of shift differential for work that occurs outside of regular hours. So, if money is a huge motivator, it might be worth seeking a shift that offers the desired compensation.
Adjust your body – mentally and physically – to working at night.
The odd hours can take a toll. The human body isn’t a machine by which, in a flick of a button, one can automatically start reporting to work from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.
Getting sufficient sleep is essential for your health and well-being. Employees working overnight need to be diligent in taking steps to adjust their body and lifestyle to have a better work experience. Steps to take include, consuming nutritious energy-boosting foods in your diet instead of coffee and sodas and getting some light exercise during your breaks on the overnight shift improving your body’s cardiovascular health.
While on the job, it might be worthwhile to take short mental breaks from work. Interact with colleagues who might be working the night shift, especially as they, too, could be able to relate to your state of mind.
Switching from a tradition 9-to-5 lifestyle to a nocturnal one can be tricky and it’s not for everyone. Those that think it’s the easiest way to make a big buck are in for a sticky shock. At the end of the day, you need to find that Mr. or Ms. Right Job, however don’t rule out the graveyard shift just yet!