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What is Your Dream Job?

What are you looking for and what is your dream job? What are your interests and what are you good at? These are all questions you should be asking yourself as you think about your next position. This section will help you address these questions and narrow your focus.

What is your dream job?
You may know exactly what you want and you may be fortunate enough to have the capabilities and skill set to meet the requirements to do this job. There are however many people who aspire to their "dream job" and do not have the background or experiences or background to actually do the job. If you are one of these people you need to get real with yourself or else you are setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. You may also need to be aware that if your dream job does not pay enough money for you to live, you will need to get another job.

What do you actually like to do?
Sounds like a simple question, right. Ask yourself the following questions to provoke thinking and help answer this question.

  • What would you actually like to be doing everyday?
  • Would you prefer to be in a big or a small company?
  • Would your prefer a job with a little or a lot of travel?
  • Would you prefer to work as part of a tight knit team or not?
  • Would you like to work with animals or maybe a job that supports humanitarian causes?

Some of these probably sound like crazy questions however right now I just want you to begin thinking out of the box with respect to your career.

The next is to write up a list of all the activities you have worked on over the past 10 years or so. Try to focus on actual tasks rather than job titles. For example:

Developed customer complaint database.
Hired six temporary laboratory employees.

Don't just limit this list to "work" activities. Put down things you have worked on in your personal life also. Examples include:

Volunteered at an animal rescue center.

Headed fundraising activity for boy scouts.

Once the list is complete assign a rating to each task. Use a 1-10 scale with 10 being the "liked doing most". Look at items numbered highest and lowest and ask yourself what you liked/disliked most about the specific task. Analyze your answers. Are there any common threads in your answers that can grasp the essence of what really drives you to like or dislike doing specific tasks? For example, if there is a common theme of working well and enjoying working with others it is probable a good bet that you enjoy being part of a team and may prefer this to working alone. There may be themes that help you understand if you like being creative or area decision maker or problem solver. Do this exercise with thought but be really careful not to over analyze and get bogged down in busy work. You are really looking for insight in to what you enjoy doing.

What are you good at?
This exercises very similar to the last likes/ dislikes exercise preceding this section. The objective here is to find out what you are actually good at. Go back to the list you created for the likes and dislikes exercise however this time put in a number form 1 to 10 with 10 being the highest or in other words the higher the score the better you believe you are at that task or skill.

Try to be as objective as possible. Think in terms of results. If you gave yourself a 10 for a fundraising task you should have collected a substantial sum of money to justify that rating. Again, be as honest as possible as it is for your benefit.

If you have given yourself a lot of high ratings your accomplishments should reflect this. On the other hand don't be too hard on yourself by underestimate your ability.

The next step is to try to find out what you want in a job. Ask yourself the following..

  • What salary and benefits do I want?
  • What type of organization do I prefer to work in?
  • What type of environment do I prefer?
  • What does job satisfaction in job mean to you?
  • What must your job allow for in your lifestyle?

Many companies today look to determine where and what types of positions employees are most suited to being in. They do this by conducting personality or psychological tests. Some career counselors will also conduct these tests for you that can help you get a clearer picture of what you may be more suited to.

The Myers Briggs test is one such test that classifies your "type" of which there are four in total and can help you understand which jobs you are more suited to.

Another common test is the "colors" test that essentially does the same as the Myers Briggs however it also provides useful information on how to interact effectively with the other "types".

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