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'It is my dream job. How could I not recognize it?'

Think it's impossible not to recognize your dream job? It happens much more frequently than you might think. Ever seen a romantic comedy where the heroine suddenly realizes that a guy she's known for the past ten years was actually her dream guy all along. She usually discovers this once he is no longer on the market. The same thing can happen to job seekers. How will you recognize your "dream job" when it comes along if you've never taken the time to determine what your dream job looks like?

Create Your Ideal Work Profile

If you derived your idea of the perfect job based on what others think or what you imagine the job will be like, you are setting yourself up for disappointment. Your ideal work profile should be based on factors like: your passion, interests, and abilities; your preferred workstyle; life/work balance, etc.


Sometimes in a romantic comedy, the dreamboat isn't all he's cracked up to be. He's gorgeous. Sure. But, perhaps he's also shallow, vain, and completely self-absorbed. He was exactly what the character thought she wanted. But, she hadn't really taken inventory of the qualities that were truly important to her. As job seekers, sometimes we act similarly. We go for the glamour, but forget about the substance when it comes to our ideal job.

I frequently encounter people who absolutely dread their current jobs - the ones that promised big bucks, the fast track, prestige, and a company car. The accountant that really wanted to go into nursing. The second year law student that now realizes that she absolutely hates law. The corporate executive that wants to do work that allows him to give back to his community. Each of them pursued the “right” career. The one that allowed them to follow in the footsteps of a family member or to pursue the career that was hot at the time. They never took the time to create an ideal work profile by evaluating which career was right for them.

Your ideal work profile will serve as a roadmap during your job search. It is an essential guide for any job seeker, whether you are just starting out in your career; a mid-career professional; or launching your second or third career. After all, if you don’t know where you‘re going, how will you know when you get there? Like our misguided heroine who passed up the perfect guy in pursuit of the guy she thought was “Mr. Right,” you could easily overlook a position or company uniquely suited to your needs in pursuit of something that is all fluff and no substance.

"So, What Do You Really Want to Do?"

When is the last time you considered this question? Some of us have never considered what it is that we really want to do. Perhaps we gave it a fleeting thought before opting to follow a more sensible route. The route that was more financially-stable or more acceptable to our parents. After all, if the money was good, we could learn to love it. Right?

For a number of career changers the answer has decidedly been, ‘No!’ Their dissatisfaction with their chosen career has led them to make a drastic change and go for a career that is better suited to their passion and interests. Even if it means making less money.

Be the victorious heroine in your quest for your dream job. Begin your job search by knowing who you are and what you have to offer. Next, create an ideal work profile that will give you direction and serve as a roadmap during your job search. You’ll readily recognize your dream job when it comes along while quickly identifying jobs that are simply misery in waiting.

Roxanne Ravenel is a Job Search Coach; the author of The Savvy Jobseeker's Guide & Workbook: Five Steps to a Simply Successful Job Search; and the host of The Savvy Jobseeker weekly podcast. Visit [Link Removed] to learn more about creating your ideal work profile and finding your ideal work in less time.

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