The stale economy has changed the way employment seekers look for a job today. Some people are settling for positions in a hostile work environment because the jobs are steady and cover the costs of monthly expenses. Unfortunately, even collecting a paycheck when the conditions surrounding you are negative can prove upsetting. Is it really worth it? How do you even find a job that is more than a paycheck to you?
Ultimately, the perfect job is one where the company culture agrees with you, and finding this can be done. More companies are realizing the importance of creating a positive collaborative lifestyle for their employees to bring about the best work. For example, Atlanta-based toy manufacturer’s Kids II culture is full of empowerment via information, and information can be delivered in many forms.
Their office actually has a slide inside which allows for quick transportation for communication with coworkers. It is the implementation of ideas (like a slide in an office) that resonate with employees and impact the culture making it a positive place. Companies that care about their employees in this way do exist, and you can find open positions with a little creative thinking.
Here’s a few tips to use when looking for that dream job:
1. Brainstorm: No such thing as a bad idea
You might be focusing too much on irrelevant areas of the employment process at the moment, such as acing the interview. There is so much more that goes into seeking out your dream job. First, you need an actual position to interview for, and taking time for reflection can help open up your mind to position possibilities you never considered.
You can start by brainstorming activities that bring fulfillment to your life. Take into consideration your favorite hobbies and interests such as working with animals, cooking or working with your hands. Do research. Ask yourself simple questions such as, what truly makes me happy? What would a perfect day look like? There is no wrong answer. Take these ideas and research backwards and forwards what a position doing ‘this’ could look like. Think outside of the box.
2. Make a List: Be honest with yourself
A list of your personal attributes can help you determine your strengths. It can also allow you to realistically delve into your weaknesses and interests you find most unappealing. If you’re a nurturer and enjoy caring for others, you could find a position in the medical field assisting individuals who are sick or elderly rewarding.
Likewise, if you enjoy meeting deadlines head-on, you could strive for something that focuses on business management. There are others who prefer to work independently, and they may find a technological career most fulfilling. Be realistic with this list. If you know a certain skill isn’t your strong point, but might be highly valued in specific positions, don’t list it. Concentrate on what comes easy and natural.
3. Attend Job Fairs: Open your eyes and ears
It will be difficult to make any confident job decisions until you learn more information. Attending a job fair is a great way to sample different positions and see what is available. This also allows you the opportunity to speak with people who actually hold the positions from that particular job to determine if it fits with your personality.
It’s important to ask questions such as what do you like and dislike most about your job, what is a typical day like and what skills and schooling are required. Job fairs are also a sound place to gauge from a high level, what the culture of that company could look like. If the representatives are buttoned up and stiff, it might be a good indication of life at that business.
4. Personality Testing: Learn about yourself
If you’re still floundering and feel lost about your career goals, you may want to try taking a personality test. There is a variety of tests available that show various attributes you possess. Which side of your brain do you use more? How do you naturally tackle problems? A person who is introverted and tends to enjoy working independently may want to cross being a motivational speaker off their job list.
Once you’ve gotten your results from the personality test, you can cross reference them with those of your dream position. It makes sense to pursue opportunities that you are hardwired to handle.
5. Job Shadow: Try it before you buy it
Hearing about a job opportunity and actually doing the work may be quite an eye opener. Before you invest a lot of time and work into something that you think is your dream job, you may want to consider shadowing a person in that particular field first. Following an employee around and watching them perform tasks can offer real insight into the type of work you would be doing on a day-to-day basis.
If your situation allows for it, interning for a specific period is another great option to get a true day-to-day taste of life. If you see employees with your ‘dream job’ working weekends and truly unhappy, then you have the opportunity to do a self check when the internship or day is over to determine if this position is still a good option for you. On the flip side, if you love what you see, this provides great self validation.
An unfulfilling job opportunity may hinder and hurt both your pocketbook and mental outlook. While adult responsibilities can send you down the wrong career path, you can use a little creativity with the above tips to find the ultimate dream job with corresponding culture.