As you get older, the stress of finding a new job increases. As a high schooler or college student, there is little risk or consequences, and you typically have many options to choose from. Life gets more complex. You start a family, you buy a house, you are (hopefully) preparing for retirement. It can be easy to fall into temptation and just jump into any job that you can land that pays what you were making before or a little more.
We want to help you find not just any job, but your job. It’s out there, we just need to figure out what your interests are, what your strengths are, what the environment looks like and develop a plan. We’ll focus on your interests today.
Know your personality
It’s important that you start with your personality and interests as you look for your job. After all, your job should be about your interests, skills, and desires and not something you have to mold yourself into liking.
If you do research on personality types, you’ll find anywhere from 4 to 16 personality types listed. They typically fall under these general categories:
- Introverted/Extroverted: This should be the easiest for you to identify.
- Planner/Flexible: Do you love building and following a plan, or do you enjoy meeting the surprises of life? Public service professions strive in flexibility, think of nurses, firefighters, police etc. While they do train and plan, they never know what their day is going to look like. Great planners sit in areas like finance, operations, and management.
- Big picture/Small details: Are you more of a visionary leader or love being in the details of the work and creation? Loving details is great for those in auditing and technology programming. Big picture and creativity work well in the arts, marketing, and business strategy.
- Solo/Team: Do you like depending on yourself or love the team environment? This will help you narrow down what type of job in the industries that you pick out.
- Logics/Emotions: Do you lean towards logic? These people love numbers, analytics, data and facts in making decisions. Emotional people follow their heart. They typically have a strong sense of their morals and use that to guide them.
- Consistency/Variety: Do you like to work on the same things consistency and grow a deep level of knowledge and expertise or do you enjoy mixing it up on different tasks and projects?
- Driver/Contributor. Some would say this category is leader/follower. We know that you can lead yourself well without having the desire to lead others. This category is still relevant though, and one I surprising struggled with a bit as I was going through the same process. Is leading others important to you? How much? Does it have to be direct leadership or can you have an impact through indirect influence? I found that I love leading people directly, but I didn’t require a number of direct reports as long as I am influencing the whole organization.
Two of the largest and most known personality profiles are Myer Briggs and DiSC. A number of companies and organizations use these two companies to better understand their people. You can find those and various free outlets online. I would suggest utilizing one. You will likely found yourself as a bit of both options in the categories above and a test can help clarify that for you.
Uncover your interests
Now that you’ve got your personality nailed down, you need to identify your interests. This means figuring out what industries you want to work in. O*NET is a site by the US Department of Labor that can help you narrow down the industries to find the best fit for you.
Step one: Find your industry
- Eliminate the industries that you are totally out for you.
- Pick ones that really interest you.
- Identify ones that have some interest.
Step two: Find your job areas
- Click on each industry that you picked and choose your top 25 areas. This will take some time to complete.
- Once you drill into the industry, you can see jobs, projected growth and what the estimated job count increase will be in the coming years.
- Narrow your list of 25 down to 12.
Uncovering your interests and identifying your personality are two very practical points towards finding your job. You now know what type of job role that you want based on your personality and where you want to work based on your interests. We’ll cover skills, the company profile, and your plan in the coming weeks.
Make a better tomorrow.