Finding a Job You'll Love

By Jeff Altman

With Valentine’s Day here, writers’ thoughts turn to ideas of tying the art of love into an article idea. I am no different.

But actually, job hunting is very much luck dating and success, after you join, is very much like having a successful marriage.

There are things you can do while dating that can lay the foundation for a successful marriage and a successful job experience.

1. Do You Get That Certain Feeling?

In job hunting, I am certainly not speaking of the feeling of a teenager’s hormones going wild. Often as an experienced professional, you seen it all and very little seems new and different. Is there anything there that piques your interest? Are there people you would work with who you can like, trust and respect? Does the physical office seem to make you feel large and expansive or like you are working in a dump?

You know what you feel like when you feel great. Unless you need the money, there should be little room to compromise your gut instinct.

2. What Do Your Friends Say?

The older we are, the more we tend to think we need to make our own decisions without any advice from anyone. I personally think that is a mistake. Knowing that you need advice and having the wisdom to ask for it is among the smartest things someone can do. I will also tell you that too often, people take jobs thaht gthey know aren’t good for them and, like bad boyfriends or girlfriends, find out that it was a bad match.

Be smart and be proactive. Ask someone to help you sort things through before making a mistake.

3. Ask great questions!

When many of us were young and in lust, we really did not know (OK. I’ve been married more than once so I’ll admit it. This was about a mistake I made) enough about our future partners to make a wise choice. As a result, it is no surprise that the marriage would end in divorce because as time went on, things would be revealed later that would prove to be untenable.

There are many questions you can ask 

4. Get Out There!

You won’t find a job sitting home and you won’t find a job if all you do is scour job boards. By all means, look at the listings, but also get out there with people and talk to them. Network. Ask for suggestions. Just don’t appear desperate. No one likes a desperate date and no one wants to help a desparate job hunter. Stay cool, particularly when it gets hot.

5. Be honest!

This is the one that should go without saying but, like in dating, job hunters (and employers) often lie. The problem is that one day you wake up wondering whether or not they loved you or the fiction you told about yourself. That little wedge will grow bigger with time and cause irreconcilable differences.

Dishonesty while dating always leads to conflict. Dishonesty while interviewing does too when disappointment sets in.

So remember, many of the problems you face in your next job can be avoided before you join. Take the time to balance your head with your heart.



Jeff Altman, The Big Game HunterJeff Altman, The Big Game Hunter is a coach who worked as a recruiter for what seems like one hundred years. His work involves career coaching, all as well as executive job search coaching, job coaching, and interview coaching. He is the host of “No BS Job Search Advice Radio,” the #1 podcast in iTunes for job search with more than 12000 episodes.

Are you interested in 1:1 coaching, interview coaching, advice about networking more effectively, how to negotiate your offer or leadership coaching? Schedule a free Discovery call.

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Photo by Jude Beck on Unsplash

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