Today I’m answering a question about finding the right job, for someone who’s mastered the interview game and keeps finding the wrong ones.
I aced a job interview this morning and landed the job. The problem is I’m not sure I want it.
It’s a talent of mine to figure out what interviewers and others want to hear. When I’m in an interview, I get lost in the game of giving the interviewer the right answer. I read in their eyes that I’m scoring points and keep going until they love me. That always gets me the job.
Then I show up on day one and my new boss and coworkers start to realize I’m not who they thought I was. Worse, I hate most of the jobs I land. The job I’m supposed to start Monday is handling the customer complaint desk for a large appliance store. I hate dealing with unhappy people, but during the interview, I said, “I live to make the grouchiest people feel they’ve been heard, their problems have been fixed and to see them walk away happy.”
I look on Craigslist every night, put in for jobs that look like they might be cool, because I really do want a job that will fulfill me. I’ve taken some career assessments at the community college, and they all say I should go into politics or sales. Unfortunately, I hate politicians and would never want to be a sales person.
If you want a job you love, you have to learn who you are. The same chameleon ability that enables you to figure out what interviewers and others want to hear and helps you give the right answers may get in the way of your finding true answers to the question, “What do I want to do and be?”
Take yourself on a road trip. Once you’re away from everyone who influences you, ask yourself what you enjoy doing. Don’t settle for “good” answers that you’ve programmed yourself to give. Instead, drill down into what you really want.
One you’ve zeroed in on what intrigues you, start reading the job ads with a more discriminating eye. Instead of looking for every job for which you qualify, search out the one job that truly excites you.
Next, make yourself a promise. The next time you interview, don’t tell the interviewer what she or he wants to hear. If you want a job that fulfills you, you have to speak the truth, even if you know you’re giving the wrong answers. If you speak from your heart and don’t get the job, you’ve succeeded. Stop looking into the interviewer’s eyes and look into your heart.
Have a question for Lynne? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org with subject “SheKnows” and she may answer your question (confidentially) in an upcoming piece on SheKnows.
© 2016, Lynne Curry. Lynne authored Solutions and Beating the Workplace Bully, AMACOM. You can also follow Lynne@lynnecurry10 on Twitter or access her other posts on SheKnows, www.workplacecoachblog.com or www.bullywhisperer.com.