You can always find a job. But finding the right job, the kind that builds on your strengths while stretching your talents, takes more thinking. Mostly about who you really are, what you really want, and what`s the best way of getting there.
To help you make the right choice for your career, we propose our own series of fundamental questions which will lead you to identify your target.
Fundamental Questions
Objective: To confirm your values, interests, skills, achievements, and goals.
Go through the following questions to evaluate different aspects of your personality and find out more about yourself and your aspirations. For each question or series of questions on the left-hand side, we give several possible hints to help you formulate your own answers.
Remember that the best answer is often the first thought that crosses your mind
What Are Your Values ?
What matters most to you? What is it that makes you feel happy and fulfilled? How would you define success?
Self-esteem, professional recognition, fairness, independence, responsibility, helping others, space for creativity, a stable family life, time for your children, physical fitness, job security, opportunities for promotion, a secure income...
Values feed interests
What Interests You ?
What is it that arouses your curiosity and triggers your enthusiasm? That energises you? What do you enjoy doing most?
A specific industry or product, the big picture or the fine print, creating something from scratch, solving problems for others, managing people, travelling, meeting new people, playing with your children, cooking, sailing...
Interests help the development of skills
What Are You Good At ?
What is it that you do well? How good are you at it?
Analysing data and drawing conclusions; dealing with materials, equipment, machinery; managing a team, persuading others…
When trying to identify one`s own skills, "how much" is more significant than "what": How creative are you in finding sources of information for your research? How comfortable are you with computers? How effective are you in managing a group of people, in communicating with them?
Skills allow achievements
What Have You Achieved ?
What is it that arouses your curiosity and triggers your enthusiasm? That energises you? What do you enjoy doing most?
Think of your achievements and determine which specific skills you used in each case, which particular interests you satisfied and which values you fulfilled. Among these, identify recurring skills, interests and values. Analysing your achievements in this way will help you define your long-term objectives. An achievement isn`t necessarily something that others notice or show appreciation of: it can be a personal, intimate feeling.
Past achievements can help you set targets
What Are Your Goals ?
What are your long-term objectives? What do you want from your career? Where do you see yourself in five or ten years? What is the ideal job title or job content you are aiming for?
Once you have identified your main values, interests and skills, as well as your greatest achievements, you are well-positioned to draw a clearer picture of your goals. Use your answers to the questions above to define objectives that match your personality and character. Once you have done that, think of how you can harness your most important values, interests, skills, and achievements in order to fulfil your goals.
To determine the industry / function that suits you best, ask yourself the following questions:
  • Which work environment and corporate culture meet my values best?
  • Where can I excel with my skills?
  • In what domain are my achievements significant?
  • How can I reach my long-term objectives?
  • To which industry/company can I contribute the most? Why would such an industry/company be a plus for my career? How do I envision the industry/company`s future, and do I want to be part of it?
Ask friends, family, professors, … where they see you fit in best. Then ask them why
There is no "right" answer to these questions – this is why you should probe deeper and deeper. Ask friends, family, professors, former and current colleagues and employers for objective advice on where they think you would fit in best, and in what role. Then ask them why. Their answers could either point to a specific job, or give you a more general idea.