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How to know you'll enjoy a job - 6 focuses to consider

Woo! Look at all the options on this job board! But there is a lot there, so how do you confirm a new job will be one that you will actually enjoy? Let's go through the six focuses to consider!

  1. It all starts with the job description.
    Read your job description carefully. It often tells you what type of company you'll find yourself doing. If it describes the new company or department as lively, energetic, with a big focus on teamwork, but you're shy, prefer working alone if possible, and want quiet, it may not be a good fit. If it appears too calm and you like intermingling with co-workers, it may not be the job for you.
  2. Take a look at where the job is located and consider your commute.
    Know the company's name, so you know exactly where the job is: is the position at headquarters or in a satellite/branch location.
    If your commute is 30-40 minutes or more, consider all issues before choosing this position, especially if the commute will be an hour or more. 
    Reconsider if you think a higher salary will compensate for that long commute.
  3. When interviewing with your future boss, how do you feel?
    This pretty much means "going with your instinct/gut," and your instinct usually isn't wrong.
    If you feel uncomfortable with your boss, you're probably right if you think your personalities will clash. No amount of money or career progression makes this situation better. Your boss isn't going to change. If anyone does, it will have to be you. That will be one-third of your day (8 hours on the job): to twist yourself into a pretzel to "get along."
  4. How to know you'll enjoy a job - 6 focuses to considerAsk to see where you'd be working.
    This also is "going with your instinct." Look for clues of the physical office, the department, the warehouse, etc. Is it dark and dingy, or do your colleagues appear to be unhappy? Are they energized and excited, and you think they're too much so? Again, go with your instinct.
    Our surroundings do matter. Naturally, a distribution center will be noisy; you understand that. But is it dirty? Is it dusty? Does it have plenty of sunshine? If it does and you don't mind, good for you? 
    If you work in customer service, you know that you'll be hearing your co-workers. Do they talk over one another? Are they too quiet? How do you feel when you experience the room? Your surroundings do matter. Don't ignore any sign that you could cause you to feel out of place.
  5. Ask to see if you could speak with a few of your future colleagues.
    You won't be visiting with them long, only so you get a sense of their personalities and how they respond to you. Do you feel uncomfortable in their presence, then this may not be a good place for you. Even if you get a sense that just one of them is stand-offish or, conversely, too friendly, that may be a sign, depending on your particular personality.
  6. Make sure to ask about duties and hours.
    Jobs may say they are eight hours a day, and then they become longer. Ask about flexibility: can you work at home some days? How does the company feel about leaving work early if a family member is sick, etc.?
    Bottom line? The more you know about the environment (both physical and personal), the corporate culture, and the expectations, the better you'll be able to sit alone for a bit after your potential new boss offers you the position to decide if this job is a good move for you.
    If not, say no to the offer. Keep looking. A great job IS out there for you!

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Topics: Establishing a Career, Re-Entering the Workforce, Preparing for an Interview, Gaining Experience, Changing Jobs, Being a Great Employee, Managing Stress, Work-Life Balance