Five-Step Checklist to Identifying Your Dream Job
There are plenty of reasons to look for a new job. Maybe a post on a staffing agency website piqued your interest. Maybe you’re seeking improved compensation and benefits. Maybe you’re interested in more flexible hours and a shorter commute. Or perhaps you’re ready to contribute to an organization that better aligns with your personal values or politics.
Whatever the reason, don’t be satisfied with finding the next job. We’ve created a simple five-step checklist to help you discover, and prepare for, your dream job.
1. Decide what motivates you
The first step to finding your dream job is answering a broad but tough question: what do you want? There are no wrong answers, but you have to be honest with yourself. Identify your top priority: Is it compensation? Is it work-life balance? Is it office culture? Is it company values?
If you’re unsure what type of job you will find fulfilling, consider where you find satisfaction in your daily life. What are your hobbies? What gives you purpose? What drives you on your toughest days? Think about the parts of your life that bring you joy and consider how these can inform your job search.
2. Identify your ideal industry or company
Once you’ve identified your motivation for finding a new job, you’ll be able to focus on specific industries or companies that can help you achieve your goal. For example, if job stability is your top priority, a position at a large, reputable company could be your aim. If you’d prefer to work in a vibrant, fast-paced environment, a young advertising agency might be ideal.
This is the time to consider how you see yourself as a person. Your best shot at achieving job satisfaction is to work in an industry that aligns with your guiding principles. For example, we are passionate about working in the recruitment industry because we can help change people’s lives. Contributing to people’s success makes us happy. Where can you find similar satisfaction?
3. Research, research, research
Now that you’ve identified an industry or company you’d like to work with, it’s time to do some serious research. You’ll need to speak the industry’s language before heading into an interview.
Take advertising as an example. You may like the idea of working for an ad agency, but your application will be unsuccessful without a nuanced understanding of the industry. Read some books on the subject, research successful and innovative agencies online, arrange informational meetings with members of the industry, and attend networking events. The more familiar you are with the advertising world, the more likely you will be to find a job in it.
4. Bolster your skillset
It’s entirely possible that your dream job will require skills and capabilities you don’t yet have. Don’t let this discourage you. Connect with people who have experience in the industry and ask for advice as you bolster your capabilities. Browse relevant job listings on LinkedIn or a staffing agency website to assess what companies are looking for. Consider enrolling in online courses to gain skills that will help you make an impact. Optimize your resume and LinkedIn profile to highlight the applicable skills you do have.
Remember: finding your dream job won’t happen overnight. You’ll need to research, prepare, and be proactive in order to find the right industry and company for you.
Once you’ve determined what you want from your dream job, researched potential industries and companies, and put in the effort to round out your skillset, you should be ready to apply for open positions. Be sure to check out TDS Personnel’s staffing agency job postings for exciting new opportunities!
Photo credit: Alper Çuğun/Flickr