The world is brimming with career options. While it’s exciting to imagine all of the possibilities, it also creates challenges. Many professionals struggle to find their perfect career match, and when a job isn’t a great fit, frustration often builds.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to discover what your ideal job is, giving you some critical direction for your professional life. If you’d like to show yourself some love this Valentine’s Day by finding your perfect career match, here are some steps to get you moving in the right direction.

Spend Time Reflecting

In many cases, you have some solid ideas about what you do and don’t want out of your career; you just may not realize that you do. Self-reflection is an excellent tool for bringing these notions to the surface. Think about your current strengths and weaknesses. Also, factor in your interests and values, as well as your current skills and experience. Consider what activities leave you feeling excited and fulfilled, as well as what causes you to feel drained, frustrated, or disengaged.

As you reflect, consider making two lists. Have one that focuses on the things you want to find with your career and another that concentrates on what you’d like to avoid. While the latter list may seem unnecessary, it can help you figure out what’s not a good fit, and that provides value, as understanding what you don’t want can make it easier to avoid missteps.

Explore Jobs, Careers, and Industries

Once you’ve finished your two lists, it’s time for some exploration. The idea is to gather information about various options in your area (or that are available remotely) and see what aligns with the lists you’ve created.

Ideally, you want to eliminate job, career, or industry options quickly if they feature more of what you don’t want than what you do hope to find. By doing so, you can narrow your focus, moving you toward your stronger matches. Then, score jobs, careers, or industries with potential.

For simple scoring, you can give a job, career, or industry a point every time it brings something to the table that you’re after. You can also assign negative points if it features something less than ideal. Then, you can total those two figures up to create a final score. While this scoring model isn’t precise, it does make it easier to conduct comparisons, and that could lead you closer to your ideal job in less time.

Engage with the Job in the Real World

Once you have a short list of solid options, it’s time to engage with the position in the real world. In many cases, what you can learn from job descriptions online and similar informational sources is limited, so it only gives you part of the picture. Fortunately, digging deeper isn’t as challenging as it seems.

One straightforward way to begin is to connect with a professional working in the role and request an informational interview. Essentially, you’ll ask them to share honest information about their job and career journey, allowing you to find out what it’s genuinely like before you commit.

Job shadowing is another excellent strategy, particularly if you’re considering another career path that’s available through your current employer. Setting up an internship could also work if such an opportunity is available.

Finally, consider getting a temporary job in the field you’re considering. With a temp position, you can try out the role firsthand, and that’s incredibly valuable. Plus, it leads to relevant experience that you can use to update your resume.

Discover Your Perfect Match This Valentine’s Day

If you want to find out if a job is your ideal match and would like to secure a temporary job that lets you give it a try, TempStaff wants to hear from you. Contact us today.

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