Do you know what makes you happy in a role? Getting what we want then discovering it doesn’t make us happy can come as a nasty surprise! It usually happens because we don’t clearly understand what we value or what truly motivates us.
Just as working on fun projects can lose its sparkle if you can’t pay your rent, a great salary might not be enough motivation if your workplace doesn’t match your expectations.
When you start looking for a job, the things that initially attract you to a role often relate to your qualifications and skill set. But beyond this, how do you make informed decisions about a job or employer?
One way is to spend a little time getting to know yourself before the job hunting begins. This can help you identify the sort of work you’re best suited to, the kind of employer you want to work for, and the type of workplace culture you’ll enjoy.
Understanding your values, motivations, strengths and weaknesses is referred to as being self-aware.
There are certain things you’ll already know about yourself, but you can also use the Curtin Challenge ‘Who Am I’ online module to gain more insight as to what motivates you as a professional.
Many employers understand the benefit of attracting people whose values align with theirs, therefore they often publish information about their workplace and culture.
When you find a job that interests you, a little bit of research should give you enough insight to decide whether you’d like to go ahead with your application.
Finally, if you make it through to the interview stage, don’t be afraid to ask questions about things you care about. Here are some suggestions:
- Is there a recycling program in place?
- How is performance monitored and acknowledged?
- Are flexible working conditions available?
“The people who get on in this world are the people who get up and look for the circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, make them.”
– George Bernard Shaw