All of us wish to find that one perfect job that suits our particular needs, skills and personality the best. But do we really know what we are looking for? Would we be able to recognise the right opportunity in advance, before we even see what it is actually like in day-to-day reality? We bring you some tips and food for thought when figuring out what your ideal occupation could be and how to find it.
Think about the important
First we definitely recommend to grab a good old piece of paper and create a few simple lists. Think about your education, skills, experience, personality, interests, plans for the future and other things you personally deem important and list all of them. If you already had a job in the past you should also evaluate this experience. You should consider what it was you did not like at your previous job(s) and what types of jobs you need to avoid in the future based on this knowledge. Also try to think about your priorities – what you are willing to sacrifice and what could be an absolute dealbreaker - because you cannot expect all of your requirements to be met.
When creating those lists, don’t forget to be honest with yourself. For example, if you learned a few German phrases five years ago do not add this to your list of skills or to your Resume. If you have a problem evaluating yourself fairly you can ask your friend, parent or spouse for help. You can also contact a professional coach if you are really struggling with this part.
Try to imagine your perfect job
Most of us have a very vague idea of our perfect job. And the cause of this probably is the fact we do not know ourselves well and we do not realise our priorities and desires. Sometimes it’s because somebody told us what we “should” want to do or because we do not think about these things deeply enough. So, with some but not the absolute regard to your reality, imagine how your ideal day in the workplace could look. Where do you work? California? Oregon? Who are your colleagues and bosses? How much should this job pay? What about your working hours? And so on. Once you have the closest idea you can get, try to integrate this idea with the aforementioned lists of important things. Try to find, so to speak, a centre, a point where all of these requirements and conditions converge in a realistic way.
Then you can think about particular positions in America that could fit into the idea you have just created.
Create a Resume
There are many and many instructive articles that can teach you to create a really neat and professional Resume. That is not the purpose of this article. But it is important to mention that your Resume should be truthful but showing off your qualities and talents at the same time. Don’t be afraid to highlight your assets but remember you’re going to have to deliver as well. Take your time and put some effort into creating the Resume and double-check for any mistakes or typos in the final stage.
Also keep in mind your Resume should be in compliance with the important points mentioned above. Your Resume doesn’t have to inform about every little detail, save some points for your interview in person.
Look and ask around
Now you have an amazing Resume in your hands (or a computer) and you are beginning to search for an interview opportunity. A primary way to get to talk to your potential future employer in the US is to send your Resume in reaction to offers found on the internet. But it is not the only way. You can also try the “old school” method of visiting and delivering your Resume in writing personally. If you daily go past that cosy little café in Texas you’d just love to work in, don’t be shy and give it a shot. This extra effort might impress some american employers but you should try to do it with some amount of elegance and class. Also, personal visit probably would be more appropriate for small local business where you have a chance to bump into the owner personally than for huge corporations that often follow protocol really closely and prefer the “official” way of contacting them when they are hiring. You just handing your Resume to some random secretary probably would not make a difference and on top of that this might be kind of confusing and awkward for everyone. You don’t want to look desperate, nosy or obtrusive.
Other options could be to visit a job fair in the USA, to contact a local US head-hunter or to browse through local magazines and newspapers. And last but not least you absolutely can ask around inside a circle of your friends, family or other people you know – you just might be in luck.
Be patient and enjoy the journey
Remember that the journey to your ideal job can be a very long and complex one. Don’t expect an answer to every e-mail you send and don’t expect you will be invited for an interview even when they respond – they might say no to you and it is their right to do so. Do not become bitter because of a few negative reactions and keep in mind that you only need one of the US employers to say YES to you – and there are many. This process will teach you patience and perseverance and those are definitely the qualities that can be utilised in almost every area of your life.
Don’t take yourself and the searching process too seriously, do what you can do and then…just wait. Don’t count on anything until you’ve signed the employment contract no matter how great you feel about the communication or the interview.
Looking for a job and learning to endure a few rejections is invaluable life experience that can really help you grow and be much more confident. All you need is the right perspective.