According to a recent study by Toll-Free Forwarding, only 10% of Americans will land their conceived ‘dream job’ that they identified at a young age. Of that 10%, just 64% of those journeys play out to meeting their surmised expectations. Furthermore, 61% of those remaining do not regret the divergent direction their career path took. So what conclusions can be made? Do not fear the ‘no’ or the prospect of change when it comes to finding your ideal career fit.

If you require a little guidance when it comes to your career indecision, here are three thoughts you must consider when pursuing a complementary role for your next career:

Understand Yourself

Talk It Out – If you need a helping hand identifying your greatest strengths and the job features you desire most in a new career, ask those closest to you (family, friends, mentors, etc.). Not only will this provide some clarity on your career path, but it will provide encouragement and confidence when you need it most. Some of the answers you receive may surprise you.

When employees find themselves dissatisfied in their current role, it is often because they did not take the time to align their strengths, interests, passions with their job search. Their objective was merely to find a new job, rather than solidifying a long-term career. If you aspire to get more out of your career and find natural motivation, take career assessments to identify your greatest strengths, weaknesses, and career preferences. What interests or personality traits tie into your career preferences? Your blueprint for success is likely varying from that of your role models, friends, or co-workers. 

60% of employed Millennials are open to exploring a different job opportunity [Gallup 2020]

Company Values/Environment

Write It Out – Base your LinkedIn profile and resume around your ideal job and ideal employer. Courtesy of The Balance Careers, here are four key questions they recommend you ask yourself when determining your work style and ideal ‘fit’:

  • Which activities are most satisfying about your current job?
  • What might you like to avoid in your next job?
  • What does work-life balance mean to you?
  • What is your ideal company culture?

The more information you can collect about what you want, the easier it will be to make a decision.

When interviewing for a new position, aim to get a feel for the company by doing your research, asking the right questions, and walking around the office before your interview. Is the atmosphere collaborative or competitive? Are employees being micromanaged? Is there an option to work remotely? Is their model of business more structured or flexible? It is paramount that you take note of these considerations, especially when you are getting pulled in different directions in your job hunt.

What Do You Hope To Get Out Of Your Job?

Think It Out – Now that you’ve identified your strengths, weaknesses, and passions, it’s time to pinpoint your job search and make the most of your opportunity:

What is most important to you in a new job? Are the company’s values a top priority for your workplace happiness? Other top examples of job priorities include work culture, skill development, room for growth, salary/bonus potential, healthy work-life balance, job security, location, and trust. Which features are your ‘non-negotiables’? Don’t settle when your happiness and mental state are at stake. Finding your new career should never compromise what you stand for or your most coveted features. 

Wrap Up

Once you have a firm understanding of your desired job title and industry, it is time to get connected. Networking is your greatest tool when it comes to landing your desired job, so it is best to get started before the connection is needed. Why? Your desired connection will know you are not seeking immediate benefits out of the relationship, but rather to learn more about their journey and potentially provide support, even if through a ‘liked’ post.

Sure, sending a hiring manager a LinkedIn invitation with a personalized message is unique and highly recommended in the job search, but imagine the difference if you already share a connection within the organization you are hoping to join. Effective networking does not involve asking your network to find you a job opening. It consists of building functional working relationships you can tap into when you discover a shared connection (and vice versa).

With some self-reflecting and dedication, you will begin to discover your dream job is closer than you first believed. 

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