Adaptation of an article by Emma Ward as featured on LinkedIn

It is our experience that people consider roles advertised rather than thinking about what they truly want from their next career move. This makes sense as they are usually busy being successful in their current position and don’t have too much time to commit to a job hunt. It is often a ‘quick look’ at a job board that sparks their interest in pursuing something.

In our initial discussions with individuals, whether they directly apply for an advertised role or have been contacted directly by our staff, include “what is your ideal role?” This question is asked without regard to a specific role. Why? If this is a career move that is going to be at least a 3-4 year proposition, you need to assess the opportunity against what you REALLY want, rather than let the role criteria dictate what you think is best for you. As an Executive Recruiter, this also helps me assess if a role or client we represent will match what you seek; even roles that aren’t publicly advertised.

Without a specific client or position, here is a small checklist of things to consider before you start looking:

  1. Culture & benefits – What are the important hallmarks of the culture you want? Is it openness, inclusion, celebration? Flexibility, bonus, career progression, international relocation, additional annual leave etc
  2. Values – What are your values? What values are non-negotiable?
  3. Hiring Manager – What is it you want in your manager? Do you need coaching or do you want autonomy or a blend? What are the questions you are going to ask to establish what’s important to you?
  4. Team – Are you successful working in a cross-functional team or working in a silo? Do you want/need a collaborative team or do you prefer working alone? Will you manage a team? Is this important to you?
  5. Location – Would you (and your family) consider relocation as part of the next step in your career? What is your preferred geographic area? What amenities and attractions you (and your family) require/want? Is there anywhere you wouldn’t live no matter what?
  6. Travel – Is travel an issue? Is this something you want that isn’t offered? Is overnight welcomed or just travel throughout the day? What amount of travel would be too much?

Then, once you know the client and position:

  1. Business results – Is the business tracking well/are they in a good position for growth? Can you leverage their expertise to enhance your skills? This may impact the engagement/motivation of
  2. Portfolio & scope – What will you be working on? Is it something you can see yourself believing in? Are you mandated? Will your skills and abilities be leveraged?

As you can see, these factors do not deal with remuneration; while this is important, studies have shown that is generally not the reason an individual seeks a new career opportunity. An honest evaluation of your skillset and value to the marketplace is essential to determine reasonable salary/wage expectations.

Grasslands Recruitment Specialists

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