Before you start any job search determine what you really, really want. I mean the nitty-gritty details of exactly what you want. Why? Because you can not find a job until you know what you are looking for. Telling potential employers that you just want any J-O-B is the kiss of death in any job search. So get clear.
Ask anyone who has ever gone through the process of purchasing a car. If your vehicle criteria indicates only something that moves from point A to point B, then any car will do – but so will a bike, or a motorcycle, or a scooter, or roller-blades, etc. You get my point.
Without a clear picture of what you want in a car, you get people trying to sell you anything, including the used derelict that won’t go more than 25 mph. However, if you know you are looking for a car with 4 wheel drive, 4 doors, automatic transmission, and costs less than $12,000. Your car search gets faster and a lot easier.
The same goes for your job search. Tell potential employers you just want a job and they usually run the other direction. Or you get the spam style job opportunities. You know those “opportunities” (wink, wink) I’m talking about. Like “Ask me how to make $1500 per month working part-time, no experience necessary”.
Instead, tell a friend you want a project management style position where you can keep projects on time and under budget while supporting an environmentally conscious company, and I bet you’ll learn about three job openings before the day is out.
So before you start your job search, figure out what you really, really want to do. Start with determining things like – daily tasks, skills you want to use, desk time, computer time, your boss’ management style, corporate environment, and co-worker personalities. Continue with things like distance to the office, travel time, industries you have a passion for and how much you want and need to get paid.
Put all these things down on paper. Call it your “Job List”. A truly technical term, I know! But it works. And be sure to include everything. When I do my Job List it usually runs 3 to 4 pages long and includes anything that matters to me, the drive to the office, salary, how much time I spend at the desk, and even how I want to use my presentation and coaching skills.
So this week, identify what you really, really want in your next career opportunity. And come back next week to read how to move onto step #2 – Identify What You Know.
Copyright 2010 Cecilia Deal and Finding Wanna. All right reserved. Reprinted here with permission from the author.
For more information about Cecilia Deal visit http://www.findingwanna.com or e-mail Cecilia directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.