How to find a job that you like – today
Finding a job that you like.
Let’s assume that you have a chosen career. You have done a bit of study, had a bit of experience and you are relatively happy in your chosen vocation. If it’s time to move to your next step on the career ladder, or you are just ready for a new role, you need to think about what you want. If you want to find a job that you like, you have to do some research. Here are some of the things that you can think about.
Finding a job that you like – the Money
How much do you want to earn? Are you prepared to earn less than what you are currently on? Is money a determinant as to where you will go?
A few years ago I worked with a professional woman who wanted a tree change. She packed her family up and they moved out into the great brown yonder. They moved to a regional town and she was fortunate to find a role in a local manufacturing business as an Office Manager. She knew that to move to a regional town would likely mean a smaller salary. That was a part of the compromise to get the lifestyle she and her family were seeking. What she didn’t realise was that she would still have to work full time, in a busy and sometimes stressful job, but with less money than she was used to earning for doing similar work. She became embittered and resentful towards her employer, who was paying both industry and regionally appropriate rates.
Money is a real factor in finding a job that you like. This is particularly the case if you are going for a big change or accepting less than you are currently on. Make sure that your expectations about what you will do for what you get are aligned with your new employer.
Finding a job that you like – the Environment & Location
Some years ago I worked “at the top end of town” out of a swanky office block with palatial sweeping views of the river. It was a flash office. Flash coffee machines on every floor, and nibbles and drinks provided. All of the furniture was new, and replaced if damaged. It was nice, and it was expensive. Fast forward a few years and I found myself in the very important other end of town, in the not-for-profit end. Work space is functional, often a bit battered and more often than not, mismatched. There are no palatial views. The coffee is international roast. I find that I am both more productive and also more effective in the functional environments of the NFP world. Although I really like fancy things, I also really like the less pretty but more comfortable work environment.
Also, the best job in the world will grow stale if you have a commute from hell. Getting up at sparrows fart to be in the office at a reasonable hour every day is no one’s definition of a good time. Spending hours on trains with literally the great unwashed, is no fun either. I’ve never heard another human utter the phrase “gee, wish I had a longer commute to work”. Literally, it’s never been said.
Finding a job that you like – the Values
In my experience, organisational values only ever come into serious consideration when they clash with your own values. Values are super important as they are a roadmap to organisational culture and behaviour. You can guarantee that you if your values don’t match at the start, it’s not going to get any better.
I am not just talking about the espoused values that sit on a corporate “who we are” chart. Rather (or in addition to) some of your fundamental values and what the organisation does. Big time environmentalist, mining might be problematic. Atheist, working for a church group might rub the wrong way. Don’t compromise your values to get a job, it will not end up being a job that you like.
Finding a job that you like – The Things that are Important to me.
The jobs I have enjoyed the most have not necessarily been the highest paid or the fanciest title (is there such a thing?). Rather, they have been jobs where a multitude of little things were just to my liking. I’ll give you an example. It has always been really important to me from a professional perspective that I am supported to learn more. It need not be a Master’s Degree in naval gazing, but it has always been important that my workplace supported my growth, from an education perspective. My boss’s availability is also important to me. The best bosses I have worked for have always given me as much time as I need (and I’m a talker!). However, I couldn’t personally give a toss about flexible work from home. It’s just not personally important to me. A workplace that supports my education and an available boss with less flexible working conditions suits me just fine.
You may be 100% the opposite. The gist of this message is that it is important to know the things that are important to you, and to find a job that meets them. Ask, before interview if you want, it will help you find a job that you like.
Finding a job that you like – The People
You know what they say, you can pick your friends, but not your work colleagues. Moving to a new organisation is always fraught with the danger that you are going to be working with giant douches. Fact, there will be at least one douche that you work with, unless you working in a business of 3 or less people.
Finding that job that you like is tricky when it comes to the people that you work with. But you can be proactive here. First, ensure that your spidey senses are on HIGH ALERT during the interview process. Take note of HR, reception and the interviewers. Are the friendly? Do they give you a good vibe. What do other employees look like as they go about their day? It will tell you a lot. If you have to walk through the office, do people look up, does anyone smile or look you in the eye? It’s certainly not definitive, but it’s something. It’s the Vibe man.
There is not a single reason, in this day of LinkedIn that you can’t, through 7 degrees of separation, find someone working at the organisation. Someone will know someone who can tell you what they heard about working for X. Again, not definitive, but there it is. Some webistes rate organisations or managers, check them out, who knows what you will find. Ask what the company or department turnover is at interview, that tells a story in itself.
Find a job that you like
Follow some of the tips here and you might not only find a job that you like, but it may be a job that you love.
Do you have any tips for finding a job that you like?
If you are seriously looking for work, try seek.