Looking for That Dream Job?
The Components of a Dream Job
In a CNN.com article entitled "Is Your Dream Job Really Out There?", the author proposes that a dream job "embodies one or more elements that makes doing your job easier or better and can mean different things to different people."
Doing your job easier or better is totally in sync with the concept of finding a career (or job) that "fits" you, rather than the other way around. For example, using your motivated skills (skills that you are good at and that you really get invigorated about using) in a field that interests you (or that you are passionate about), can contribute to a high-quality work experience.
If your career (or job) also allows you to function using the strengths and preferences of your personality type, that will not only make the job feel "easy" - natural and enjoyable - but, in all likelihood, will also produce a significantly better outcome. In this way YOUR dream job can also be beneficial for your employer who values results, productivity, innovation, sales, and the bottom line.
The final piece to a "dream job" is one that matches your values, your goals (the vision and purpose of your career and personal life), and your non-negotiable needs. This often is a more difficult match to make. For instance, while you may really enjoy your job (skills, interests, and personal style are all in sync with what you do day-to-day), it may be too demanding in terms of travel, so that you have little time to spend with your family.
Career Assessments Can Lead the Way
Career confusion and indecision, often resulting in career apathy, seem to be common - so common that the idea of a dream job may seem impossible to some. Yet, finding a career direction or focus is remarkably simple...it's really all about YOU.
What makes you unique - what's your "personal brand" (your authentic, differentiating characteristics)? What are your motivated skills, interests and passions, values and goals, personality type, and rock-bottom needs? All of these are components in exploring what YOU are about and how that can "sync up" with some exciting possible career choices.
Career assessments are one tool to assist in uncovering these clues about ourselves. They can be formal, standardized assessments (such as the MBTI career test or Strong Interest Inventory), informal (such as subjective self-reports and homework questions, or creative writing, journaling, or art), and even 360-degree external feedback assessments (such as the 360Reach personal branding assessment) that allow us to gllimpse how others "see" us and our unique characteristics.
Career assessments (both standardized and informal types) can help to uncover the dream-job elements and, along with on-target career coaching/counseling, can facilitate producing a benchmark against which you can measure job possibilities. Getting clear on what exactly makes for a dream job allows you then to know what you are pursuing - and also when you get close (so close, in fact, that you may jump at the job opportunity). Remember the saying, "When you aim for the moon and fall short, you're till among the stars!"
Assessments for Insight, Action + Attitude for Results
What are the elements of YOUR dream job? How will you know you have found it? Do the characteristics of your dream job change and grow as you do, or are they static? In a world where many say dreams are impossible, have you found your dream job?
Knowing all the elements of what makes you unique is the first step in leveraging you into the career of your dreams. With the right career assessments and the assistance of a well-qualified career counselor or coach, you can "cut through the clutter" in your mind and gain career focus - insight into the career that meshes seamlessly with who you really are.
Establishing your brand identity through your actions is the second step. Transforming insight into results requires communicating your differentiating factors to others clearly and consistently as you pursue your new career focus, living according to your stated values and needs, and integrating the meaningful goals in your life into daily action.
The attitude of success - facing down the skepticism within yourself and others, and meeting the fear of change with commitment, courage, and humor - is the final step in finding and keeping your dream job.
Orison Swett Marden, founder of the modern success movement in America, and forerunner of "success authors" such as Napoleon Hill, Dale Carnegie, Norman Vincent Peale, Stephen R. Covey, Anthony Robbins, and Brian Tracy had this to say about the impossible: "All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim, have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible."
He also said, "The golden opportunity you are seeking is in yourself. It is not in your environment; it is not in luck or chance, or the help of others. It is in yourself alone."
(c) 2012 Susan Guarneri, National Certified Career Counselor, Certified Personal Branding Strategist, and Certified Career Management Coach. All rights reserved.