You’ve taken a close look at what you have to offer. The next step is to determine what you’re seeking. Doing this will help you to job target or zero in on particular fields of work.

Likes and Dislikes
Based on your employment and life experiences to date, make a list of your likes and dislikes using the categories below. Be as specific as you can. Pick your top three likes and dislikes and put them on your “Wish List” page.

Topic Likes Dislikes

Equipment/tools/furniture _
Hours of work (shifts/overtime)
Nature of the work
Being part of a team
Opportunity for advancement
Input in decision-making
Status _

Opportunity to influence, coach and develop others

This exercise represents work-related needs or values. The first eight are external and apply to aspects of work that do not contribute to job satisfaction. For example, a job you dislike would not be more satisfying if you tripled your salary.

The remaining ten are elements of work that satisfy internal values. These are the values or needs to achieve for you to experience job satisfaction and fulfillment. Job satisfaction comes from the match between these needs and:

– job content or actual nature of the work
– the organization’s culture
– workgroup norms
– supervisory/management style

Several assessment tools follow to assist you in clarifying your needs. When you’ve analyzed what would be ideal for you in these four main areas, add your shopping list of specifics for your apparent requirements.

What you’re doing is creating the anatomy of an ideal work situation for yourself one limb at a time. The more detail you can put into your specifications, the more it will become apparent where you’ll need to look.

Myth: Education is more desirable than experience.
Reality: Education plus experience is the desirable combination.

Wants Versus Needs
Needs represent those elements that you must have in your work or other life roles to feel fulfilled. They are essential for you. Wants are those elements that would be desirable. Review the following list of needs. Use the additional spaces to add others if you wish. Check off the ten that are most relevant to you and number these in order of importance. The clearer you are about your needs, the better you’ll be able to target your next job.

– economic security
– stimulating environment
– knowledge/learning
– recognition of supervisors
– recognition by the general public
– recognition by friends
– pleasant location
– variety in the job
– opportunities for growth
– maximum use of abilities
– independence
– time for self or family
– achievement
– opportunity to contribute to society
– supervising others
– influence over policy
– adventure
– money
– travel
– creativity

List your top three needs below and put them on your “Wish List” page.

  1. ______________
  2. ______________
  3. ______________

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