Chances are that everyone has that day at work once in a while where they just want to throw their hands up and walk away. However, there’s a big difference between daily frustrations and a job that is actively a bad fit for you. While we daydream every now and then about that perfect job, have you ever really thought about going for it? A dream job can become a reality, but getting there is a mixture of planning and work.
Mapping Your Options
Sometimes, it’s not so much that you know what you want to do versus knowing that you’re not happy where you’re at. One of the best ways you can uncover that dream job to work for is doing a bit of self-exploration. For example, figure out what your greatest talent is. If you’re not sure, consider asking some of your peers who see you work every day! There are also some professional tests and diagnostics that can help steer you the right way. In some cases, people are fortunate enough to have their skills and interests intersect. However, that’s not always the case. Once you know your skill set, think about the jobs that you have or used to have. What didn’t you like about them? What do you value most? For example, some people like the opportunity to travel, or some value the chance to work from home. All these little details are important to iron out. When you know these two factors, the next thing to do is research, research, research. See what jobs match your values and skills, and consider bringing others in to help. Lean on your network for connections, or even seek out a professional career counselor.
Doing the Work
When you’ve figured out what you want to do, the next step is figuring out what opportunities are available in the field. Sometimes, a region may be a hub for a certain industry, or maybe you need to develop a certain skill in order to get your job. Ultimately, there may be some bigger roadblocks to putting together your plan though. Some of these, like financial issues, can be a bit difficult to overcome. It’s one thing to take a risk and another thing to make a poor decision. However, there are other issues in the job-seeking process that are also important, but not insurmountable. For example, a major part of appealing to your potential new employer is your resume. A good resume compiles all your experience and relevant skills in a way that not only makes you look great, but is also easy to read through and customized to the job at hand. This can be a difficult balance to strike, especially if you’re not a skilled writer. Consider using outside resources to help make things easier. For example, here are some resume templates. Use these to help you find a format that works, then insert your own experience.
Making the Transition
Part of leaving a job is making sure you handle the transition professionally. Anything you can do to take the burden off your current employer, from giving a heavy amount of notice to offering your help in planning an exit strategy can do a lot. However, if you start doing that dream job, especially if you are starting your own business, this is only the start of the plans you need to put together. For starters, if you’re setting out on your own, it may pay to do a little side hustling before you decide to jump off the deep end. Be sure you try a variety of different projects to weigh challenges. Not only will this allow you to refine your plan, but also to gauge the ebb and flow of business. If you’re going to be an employee rather than a boss, your planning may be a bit more theoretical. If I’m making less for a more fulfilling career, what can I do to save? If money isn’t the issue, is there other adjustments I’m going to have to make in life?
One important thing to realize when it comes to your dream job is that the stars rarely align when you think they will. As a result, that perfect moment to tackle your dream job may not come. What you can do to make your transition as smooth as possible is apply preparation at every stage, from choosing what you really want to making yourself as appealing a candidate as possible.