Are you in a career that you absolutely love? Would you call it your dream job? Or do you find yourself dreading your work wondering how you’re going to make it to Friday?
For most of us, our careers define who we are and what we do with our lives and rightfully so. We do spend 40+ hours each week working at a company or in a business we own.
So, if you are wondering if there is more out there, if you are ready for a change, or if you just don’t feel like you’re getting paid what you’re worth, you are in the right place.
Let’s look at four questions you can ask that will put you well on your way to find your dream job.
Question #1: What’s your current employment?
Hopefully, you have full-time work already, but what is your satisfaction level? To find your dream job, you must start with your current career.
Let’s say that you work for ABC Company earning $50,000 per year. You have been there for five years, and you are working towards a management position that you believe could happen in the next 2 years.
Would it make sense for you to be looking for work somewhere else? I can’t answer that specifically without knowing a little bit more about the environment where you work. Are there lots of opportunities for growth? Are there lots of changes throughout departments regularly?
Another important distinction is the size of your company. If you are in a headquarters, traditionally, there could be a lot of change but also a lot of opportunities for you to grow and develop your career.
On the other hand, if it’s a small office, you may have to move to another office or simply wait until someone finally retires before your desired position opens up.
Question #2: How do you define your dream job?
What would your dream job look like? Would it be a Monday to Friday, 9-5, weekends off kind of environment? Do you want the ability to work at home, set your own schedule, be self-employed, etc?
If you can’t define what you really want in a career, you will probably always end up jumping from one job to the next hoping it’s better.
Maybe what you would really like to do is be your own boss, but you are not sure how to make that happen. I encourage everyone I work with to invest in a strengths test. It is vital to know what your strengths and gifts are to help you know what kind of dream job would be the best fit for you.
The last thing you want is to climb the ladder of corporate success only to realize it’s leaning on the wrong wall! Your dream job is not directly connected to monetary success.
There are other factors that make the finding or creating your dream job more important than money. I know too many individuals who feel stuck because they kept accepting promotions at work, and now they feel there is nothing else they can do but to stay until retirement.
So, if you aren’t sure where to begin to find your dream job, invest in a strengths test and compare the results to your current career. Then, let’s move on to question number three.
Question #3: Where do you live?
To find your dream job you need to consider where you live. This question encompasses everything about your living environment – the country, the city, the house, the family, etc.
Let’s say you think that your dream job is to become a manager at a manufacturing plant that produces candy bars. You are single and currently, rent your apartment. You complete a search online for candy bar manufacturing plants and find that there aren’t any near where you live, but if you move to another state just three hours away there are two plants.
What would you do? I’d say find out who the hiring manager is and get moving! You see, in that example, the location was very important to the success of the individual.
Fortunately, the internet brings all sorts of opportunities to choose where we want to live regardless of the businesses in the area that may or may not be hiring. So, if you already have your roots down and a growing family, maybe moving isn’t a feasible option to find your dream job.
And if that’s the case, we need to look at question number four to know where to go next.
Question #4: What’s your job search strategy?
So far in trying to find your dream job we have looked at your current career, defined your strengths, and looked at where you live. What’s next?
Now we get to look at our job search strategy. Next week we are going to go into more specifics of how to complete an effective job search that actually works.
For now, let’s consider two things: who do you know and where do they work.
First, who do you know that loves what they do? Take them out for coffee or lunch and ask them what it is that they love most about their jobs. You may find that it took them years to even begin to find a dream job, and you are at the early stages of your career.
Or maybe you will find that they are still on their journey to really defining what makes it a dream job. Either way, your next question (if you don’t already know) should be where do you work?
Chances are because they are already enjoying their work, they will have a positive outlook on the job environment at their own company and the area they live in.
At this time, you may be thinking that I’ve given you a lot of general answers but you want specifics! Come back next week, and we will dive into a great job search strategy that I have used successfully several times.
But for now, I want to leave you with this thought: if the only thing holding you back from finding your dream job is you, get out of your way!
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life. – Proverbs 13:12 NLT