The job hunt is a tiring, confusing process. When we have clear direction for our next step, it can be easier to draft a plan with tactics. But what about when you’re not sure what you want from your next position? Here are some ways you can start mapping and planning your next position, even if you’re not quite sure what you want that position to be.
- The Good Stuff. Start tracking the things you enjoy about your work currently. It can be the skills you’ve acquired, the people you work with, the company’s investment in their employees or the way it makes you feel. Look for trends in the positives, and note that you want more of them.
- Talk. Meet with people who are the same as you and different. If you think you’d like your role more somewhere else, chat with someone who does what you do, somewhere else. If you think you’d like to try out a different type of role, chat with those people too. Not only are these conversations helpful, but you can ask many questions in an informal setting and find out more honest, off-the-cuff feedback. You just may discover that you’re experiencing the grass is greener. Or, you may find a role you want next, or a company you’re interested in. Better yet, you just met people who can give you great advice – or access to their head recruiter. Expert tip? Go for coffee before work. It doesn’t take up too much of anyone’s time, lets everyone keep their evenings free and gives everyone the coffee fix they wanted anyway.
- Track Success. Once you start interviewing, you’ll get lots of questions about how you’ve handled situations in the past. Even if you’re looking for a slightly different role, by keeping track of things that have gone well, or that you’ve learned from, you’ll have great fodder for those conversations. Or for your next review!
- Build Skills. If you need more of something to take on another role, go ahead and do it. Between coursera, udemy and local workshops you can build up your expertise in many areas. Consider it a small investment for your future career.
- Evaluate. Think about what values are important to you in your next career. It can be that you want to work somewhere smaller, larger or that you want to make sure people move around a bit.
- Go Inside. As you’re looking at all the details you have in front of you, think about if you could fulfill these needs in your current company or role. Do you have the support of your manager to extend your skills further? If so, think about levering your current company’s offerings to expand your career.
- Remember. Remember that your career if fluid, as are your needs. It’s possible what you need today could be different than what you want tomorrow. In the same way that your needs may change, remember that it’s okay if things are quite aligned at this moment. The only constant is change, right?