Questions to Ask Yourself before Choosing Your Ideal Job


Your Ideal Job

According to a YouGov survey commissioned by Oxford Open Learning, 25% of British workers are dissatisfied with their current job role. Many of those surveyed do not believe that they are being paid enough, whilst no hope for progression and high stress were also big factors contributing to employees being unhappy at work.

The survey suggests that a significant proportion of job seekers are not taking into consideration all of the relevant factors needed for better job satisfaction; so we have listed some of the key questions to ask whilst you’re in control of your immediate destiny. 

Does the Job Fit my Personality?

A good understanding of personality traits and preferred style of working is useful for identifying the type of work environment that is best for you to work within. There are some useful tools to help gain this level of self-awareness such as Schein’s Career Anchors, which can help you understand what you value and what motivates you in your career. People normally identify strongly with one or two out of the eight anchors described and can assist in the identification of the perfect combination of compensation, intrinsic reward and status to maximise job satisfaction.

Is There Enough Autonomy in the Work?

There are several studies to suggest that autonomy is twenty times better at predicting happiness than income. This includes a Whitehall study that found that workers at lower grades had poorer health than their colleagues at higher grades who were awarded with greater control over their work. Whilst income is also an important factor to consider, it is vital that you determine the level of autonomy that you would be most happy with.

Are there any Hidden Costs?

A long commute to work is one of the important factors that have a negative impact on work-life balance. Research by the Office of National Statistics has found that people who are spending between 60 and 90 minutes getting to work each day are more miserable than other colleagues. As well as the negative emotional impact, there can also be a hidden monetary cost in commuting such as higher travel and childcare costs. It is important to weigh the negative emotional and physical costs against the positive factors to decide if the job and salary are worth any sacrifices that you will be making.

Is the Role Challenging Enough?

Finding an interesting role should be a high priority for you considering that IT professionals aged between 21 and 45 give their current job a boredom rating of 7.5 out of 10. Employees state that the top reason for their boredom is the lack of challenge in their jobs, followed by not using their skills or knowledge and doing the same things every day.

A survey of Executives and Managers reveals that doing something challenging is indeed one of the top three priorities for finding the ideal job, as this leads to personal growth and a positive contribution to organisational growth.

Are You Proud to be Associated with the Employer’s Brand and Services

Research carried out by consultants Tony Schwartz and Christine Porath shows that employees that are able to derive meaning and significance from their work are more likely to stay with their employer. This is a direct result of higher job satisfaction and greater engagement with their work.

Additional research from US workers identifies the strongest predictor of meaningfulness to be the belief that their job is having a positive impact on others. Working for a company whose products and services you are proud of representing, as well as an organisation with values that you agree with, has a positive impact on creating a motivating and satisfactory work environment.

So if you find a challenging, sufficiently autonomous role working on impressive products and services less than 60 minutes commute from your house, and your personality fits the company’s values, you may want to shake hands now.


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