“Dear Pete: I graduated from college last year and have the spent the last 12 months feeling completely lost in regard to my career. How do I find the job for me?”
Many students and young professionals feel a tremendous amount of pressure to find the perfect job. While you should be focused, it’s a big mistake to think that there is only one job out there that is right for you. The truth is that there are plenty of jobs that could be a great fit for you. In a recent article/video, I talked about how to think through the “big-picture” of what you want to achieve through your life and career. Here are 4 questions you can ask yourself as you evaluate specific career paths and job opportunities:
- Will I get to use my strengths? When you get to use your strengths at work every day, you will be much happier and your performance will skyrocket.
- Am I passionate about and proud of the mission of the organization I would be working for? When you start your career after college, you will probably have to pay your dues initially by completing tasks that may feel beneath you. It’s much less painful to do this sort of work when you know it’s for an organization you truly believe in. On the other hand, doing “grunt work” for an organization you don’t care about is really painful.
- Will the work environment make me happy? Think about the work location, work environment, culture, day-to-day flow, etc. in which you will be happiest. For example, one person might find working alone at home to be great, while another person might find such a solitary work environment to be depressing. Here’s another example. One person might find it overwhelming to work in a skyscraper in a major metropolitan area, while another person might find it incredibly exciting. You are going to spend a lot of time at work, so make sure the work environment makes sense for you.
- Will this career path support my ideal lifestyle? While very important, your career is only one part of your life, so make sure that your career will support your ideal lifestyle. For example, let’s say it’s really important to you to be able to spend a lot of time with friends and family outside of work each week. In that case, a career where you are traveling all over the world most of the year will probably not be a good fit for you over the long-term, no matter how prestigious, exciting, or lucrative.
P.S. I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below! Please “like” and “share” this article and video as well.