Job hunting is often like a house of mirrors, and opportunities that seem perfect from a distance turn out to be duds once you face the day-to-day realities. While dream jobs do exist, you can't identify ideal positions until you understand what motivates you and which conditions help you succeed. To land your dream job, use self-assessment to narrow your focus and single out beneficial career moves from bad ones.
Define Your Career Objectives
If you repeatedly find yourself stuck working at the wrong company, start paying attention to factors that aid or hinder your success. Roles differ from one business to another, so a job title tells you nothing about the distribution of responsibilities, growth potential or leadership opportunities you can expect in any position. To pinpoint your dream job, write a career profile outlining your hard and soft skills, personality, experience, goals and ideal workplace. Keep in mind, career insight can come from informal experiences, such as fixing computers in your spare time or overseeing the community newsletter. Evaluating what you want out of life can help you determine which jobs highlight your strengths and contribute to your overall job satisfaction.
Be a Proactive Job Hunter
Browsing job boards for available positions is a passive job search tactic. Instead, use your career profile to draft a list of companies that align with your values. Whether they're hiring or not, start following your target companies online, and exhaustively research what they do, their typical clients and their growth plans. By studying their evolution, you can figure out how your skills can help the company provide better solutions in the future.
Connect With Influencers
Referrals are the best tool for bypassing the traditional job search process, so talk to friends and colleagues about your dream job, and build relationships with others by attending industry events. Give others a reason to trust you and value your expertise by lending a helping hand whenever possible, whether it's offering a referral or useful advice. With patience and genuine interaction, you may be able to connect with current employees at your target companies, helping you gain credibility from people with influence.
Use a combination of active and passive marketing techniques to land your dream job. Establishing a personal website or blog that describes your core strengths and the business problems you solve can help recruiters find you online. At the same time, take risks and directly contact decision-makers at target companies to make authentic introductions. Find creative ways to show your worth, such as a video resume, business proposal or portfolio clips. Sharing your personality and letting hiring managers know why you love the company can help you get a foot in the door or even find out what additional skills you need to improve your candidacy.
A dream job isn't beyond your reach if you make the effort to understand the needs of your target companies. Just like job seekers, employers want to speed up the hiring process as much as possible, so develop a strategy to position yourself for success.
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