New Career Search = Time to Look in the Mirror

September 2013

The next step on the career ladder is always a big one.  It can be risky and rewarding.  You want to be sure that your next job is a winner, as great as you imagined.  The question is; how do you make sure the next step is the right one for you?  Step 1 is looking in the mirror to find out what is important to you.  

Most people start by thinking about great companies to work for.  They might check out every piece of information available, including a company’s products, benefits, buzz, culture, and finances.  A trove of information is just a click away.  Sure, you should research prospective employers, but there is a better first step.  The first step involves you looking in the mirror to evaluate yourself and understand your skills and needs.   

 

Evaluate Yourself First
Evaluate yourself before looking at job opportunities.  Find out what’s most important to you. 
• Is it all about the money?
• Do you need to focus on work/life balance right now?
• Do you need the energy and allure of a start up to stay motivated?
• Are you a technology junkie?
• Do you want to avoid a commute?
• What type of manager do you enjoy working for?
• Do you know why you might want to leave your current job?

 

The last question is most important.  The success of your next job interview may depend on how well you can answer questions about your current job – why you have stayed and why you are considering leaving.

 

Everyone has a different set of questions.   Your mentors, peers, and a recruiter can all help you ask the best questions to further your career goals.  Be honest today to help yourself tomorrow.   Let your self-reflection guide your job search and the interview process. 

We want candidates to be happy for the long haul.  And we are happiest when we match candidates with great jobs.  My experience is that people who ask themselves hard questions up front, and put a premium on honesty, are happier over time.  Candidates who don’t ask themselves hard questions face the same issues at every job.   Be honest with yourself and leverage that information to find a great job.