Is Job Searching like Dating?

The world is re-emerging post pandemic, and with it, re-evaluated priorities. Job and career change have been abound in recent coaching conversations. And strangely, it seems many of us have perceptions about job searching that sound remarkably similar to dating and relationships. It's time for us to break up with those feelings and take on job searching with renewed freedom. Read on to learn how to redefine your relationship with your work.


Before you search and apply for that next right thing, consider your values. What’s important to you? What kind of work environment allows you to show up at your best? What kind of life do you want outside of work? Challenge yourself to write a job description that has nothing to do with a specific job and more about the type of work environment that allows you to use your strengths and show up as your best self. Organizational psychologist Adam Grant recommends getting clear about your deal breakers:




If your values don’t align with the work environment and life you are pursuing, it’s unlikely any new role will be successful. Go after companies with diversity in the C-Suite. If you want flexibility in your schedule, find companies that truly offer that, in policy and practice. Identify ways to ask deep questions of recruiters and in interviews that help you see your values in a work place, people, supervisor and culture.


Money is a loaded issue for many of us, and clients bring lots of thoughts about it to coaching sessions. Is wanting more money a bad thing? Is pursuing another job for greater compensation as icky as it feels? What if I have to take a pay cut? I deserve to get paid what I’m worth but I don’t want to sell my soul to something I don’t believe it. These are all loaded questions.


First, think deeply about your relationship to money and the messages you give yourself about it. Do any of the messages below from the Gottman Institute resonate with you?



How do any of these show up in your life? Are these messages that serve you? When we gain clarity regarding our internal relationship to money, we have an opportunity to get in touch with what really matters. Take time to define what financial security means to you. Give yourself permission to declare what you need from your income and go after it.


For some clients, there's a sense that if they are looking at the job market, they’re cheating on their current job. Let’s bust that myth right now. Even if you love your job, it meets your values and current needs, and/or you’ve been there a long time, you are still allowed to see what else is out there. Your job shouldn’t fall into the same category as other life long commitments.


Once you’ve gotten clear about your values and financial needs, it’s time to start looking at job postings. They can be great sources of inspiration both for your resume and your search. Notice the skills you find in job descriptions. Do you have those skills or experiences already? Are they best represented in your resume? Edit accordingly.


Job searches are often connected to internet algorithms feeding you information based on previous searches and your current job title or resume. This is great when you are looking for something that clearly aligns with what you are already doing. But what happens when you want to change fields or look for something drastically different?


Consider asking people close to you. Tell them about your ideal work environments, what’s important to you, and ask them for ideas of what kind of jobs you might be great in. Do they know anyone they can introduce you to who works in a similar role or company?


It’s not unusual for people to be thinking about or looking for new jobs, but haven’t mentioned it to anyone. This makes sense when it feels like a current role might be in jeopardy if colleagues or supervisors knew you were looking. And, it’s also impossible for others who know our strengths to help us find something better for us if they don’t know we are open to new possibilities. Allow those you trust to connect you. Job searching doesn't have to be like blind dating.


Looking for more clarity on your job search? Want to dive deeper into your values or relationship to money? Let’s do a complementary coaching session! Schedule yours here.

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One of the great things about coaching is knowing other coaches doing amazing things! Fellow coach Kim Hamblin-Hart and colleague Lisa L McGee are hosting an online workshop on archetypes, universal patterns of behavior we can utilize when we need to change our thoughts or behaviors.

During challenging times we often get stuck in old patterns that keep us from overcoming the obstacles we face. By tapping into specific Archetypes we can learn to lean into our challenges, make bold decisions, and embrace change with courage and compassion. Learn more about this awesome opportunity here!