There are a number of things you need to do before your job search: Refresh or rewrite your resume, create your personal brand, develop your elevator pitch, find a word that really describes you, practice your handshake and smile…the list goes on. But one thing many candidates skip, although it’s crucial to their success and satisfaction, is to identify what they want out of the next position they accept.
The bare bones basics are a job that matches your skills where they pay you for doing it. But what do you want in addition to the bare bones? What does success, fulfillment, and satisfaction look like to YOU? We each measure success differently.
Some of what you look for in a great job is based on your generation. Boomers tend to want to make a step up the ladder with each new position. Titles and pay-grade are important to them. Generation X tends to prefer flexibility and a great work/life balance while earning enough money to support that lifestyle and balance. Millennials focus less on the money and more on the impact they can make with their work and being passionate about what they do. They still want to be paid, but they work toward socially meaningful change and personal fulfillment on the job as well.
Other aspects of what you look for in the perfect position are highly personal. It’s important to look at your life, your needs, your expectations, and what makes you feel best about going to work each day. Are you happy in your current industry? Is it time for a shift or a total change? What else are you qualified to do? Follow those ideas and insights through and create the profile of the ideal position for you. Be realistic, but reach for what you truly want. No one can hit the center of a target they haven’t even placed on the range!
If distilling what you want out of your next job seems overwhelming or confusing, it may be time to consult a Career Coach. An experienced coach can ask the right questions to start the ball rolling, and help you get prepared for your search for the ideal job.