Job Crafting

Job crafting refers to the way that each individual shapes the job that he / she does in order to satisfy their own needs and desires. This can be independently of the organization’s needs. 

There are three main areas that job crafting affects :

  • Quantity of work (you can do more or less)
  • Relationships with others (these can be improved or can deteriorate)
  • Perception of work (an insurance agent sees his / her work as helping people after accidents, rather than just processing claims)

For more details, please refer to “What is job crafting and why does it matter” (Berg, Dutton & Wrzesniewski)

Jobs are crafted by different aspects of a person : ambitions, desires, skills, personality traits, personal interests, etc.

An interesting part of the job crafting approach is the finding that those who actively engage in it are more likely to be engaged and motivated workers. If you are interested, you can find more information here.

Job crafting is similar to job redesign, the difference being that job redesign is negotiated with the employer in a formal process while job crafting is done under the radar.


The job and the crafter

In a previous post we argued that the person and the post they fill should be kept separatly within CRM systems because people move from one job to another in their careers. In the same fashion, job crafting and its effects requires the person and the post they fill to be kept separately.

The job can be considered to be what the person should be doing. It involves a list of requirements, expectations and reporting lines. The crafted job is how the person currently holding that position fulfills the requirements, meets the expectations and respects the reporting lines. The difference between the job and the crafted job will vary depending on the person, but there will always be a difference.


Job crafting and the effect on the sales meeting

We can picture all the people in a network busily job crafting in their own manner (with a positive or negative outcome, knowingly or subconsciously). The effects of this will filter down to many business situations, including the sales meetings.

  • The sales person who considers the job in terms of hitting his / her commission at the end of the month will have a different approach to one who thinks in terms of making the client happier.
  • The client who sees the purchase as part of a wider plan will use different criteria from a client who is looking for the cheapest and/or quickest option to deploy a solution.

As a manager of a sales team, I need to think about which aspects I want my individual team members to develop and which ones I think the whole team could embrace. This kind of insight will help me to plan training and assessment programs.


Job crafting and organization to organization

Within the organization to organization (o2o) complex sales situation, job crafting will also play a role. A new occupant is going to bring his / her own way of crafting the job. This could be in terms of

  • Priorities for business development (opening new markets in a given zone, etc)
  • Personal criteria for making decisions (carbon footprint, ethical business, etc)
  • Personal preferences for partners (size and profile of suppliers, etc)

As a sales manager, I need to think about which of my team member, as job crafters, will be best suited to work on a particular account and with certain people within that account. Using my knowledge about my team, I am in a better position to not only cover the network (see our post on network coverage in o2o) but also to cover it with people intelligence.


In addition, understanding how key people in my client’s ecosystem have crafted their jobs will help me get a better understanding of the way that they fit into the network. I can look for people who are making similar changes and possibly use this to my advantage. The use of Key Opinion Leaders by pharmaceutical companies is an application of this idea.


Next generation CRM

Job crafting affects the way we as individuals work and the way we affect the organizations we work for. And recognition of this is growing on both sides of the Atlantic. It is clearly going to play a role in the way we think about people and the jobs they do. 

The question is : how will future systems manage this aspect of the person / post combination?