The right job match

Applying for a job is tricky enough. It’s competitive, takes mental and physical energy, can be disruptive, and all the decision making and emotions, pinning your hopes on your dream job.

So, what makes the role you’re going for a perfect match?

When I started coaching in this space a mentor drew a Venn diagram (above) to outline four key elements to making sure the job is right:

Skills – to do the job

Remuneration and rewards

The work aligns to your values

Encompassing these three things is the organisational culture and making sure the work environment is a good match for you.

4 key components for assessing if the job is right for YOU

I like to draw people to these four points, when I coach – to help them understand the importance of not leaping at the first job that’s offered with a good salary. I don’t discount that often a job is about an income to pay the bills. Big tick there. But, if your skills aren’t aligned, adequate training’s not provided, and the work culture is unsupportive and causing stress, then you’ll find yourself back to square one. And resigning comes with angst, especially if you have a loyal work ethic.

In my mid-20s I started a job with a property management firm after backpacking through Europe and the UK. I didn’t do my due diligence and it didn’t last. I took the secretarial job because I had six years’ office admin experience under my belt with great organisations, and I’d made the assumption that all workplaces look after their staff. This one didn’t. Not only was I yelled at across the room for making a typo or missing a comma, my team mate who sat next to me was often ‘bitchy’ towards me. I tried to fit in and I upheld my professionalism. I grinned and bared it. Then I resigned. After six weeks. It was my shortest stint in a job ever.

Fast forward 25 years (or so) – I’ve enjoyed a fulfilling career in HR and career management working in cultures that have been a wonderful match for me – and given me the confidence to start my own career coaching business.

Now, my son has stepped into his first full time job and I’ll share how I supported him to find a role that he absolutely loves…(this story flows on from my previous blog post)!

Aidan finished year 12 last year and decided to pursue an apprenticeship in welding. We looked online together to see what was advertised and reviewed each job ad. My son is introverted, a bit nerdy and pretty smart. We talked about the type of engineering environment that would suit him. He was keen to find a work culture that was supportive and inclusive of their employees. A good sense of ‘team’ with a results focus. There were other factors too, including location (accessible by public transport).

With these criteria in mind it wasn’t long before he found a job that ticked the boxes, he applied, was interviewed and landed a labouring job with an engineering firm that makes sterilisation units for the health care sector. He is SO happy and thriving in the role after five weeks. The team are great. His boss is supportive. The money is right. Location tick!

So, what if the culture isn’t right. You can do the job. The money is right, but the environment leaves you wondering after a few weeks, ‘have I made the right choice?’

Firstly, if this happens, don’t beat yourself up – treat it as a learning curve.

To avoid this situation…review the company – look at the website. Google any articles about the organisation. Check their Facebook page and any reviews you can find. Do you know people who work there? Or past employees you could chat with.

When called to interview, listen to how they talk about the organisation and team.

Interviews are a two way process. You are assessing whether this is the job for you, being curious about the work culture and the job will help you make the best decision in working for them. You could ask – how would you describe the team culture? How does management lead and support the team?  Is there a position description and training (and written processes) for the role?

Having sound leadership practices and work structures in place are proven to reduce the risk of stress for employees in the workplace. This Harvard Business Review article summarises this beautifully on Making Work Less Stressful and More Engaging for Your Employees.

So…for the job seeker – understanding what you want and need in the role AND workplace is a good starting point. When I coach people who are looking at a career change, I invite them to complete a values and motivators exercise. This helps give clarity on what’s important to them and help with decision making and to job search strategically.

This method has proven well for my son, and many others I have coached. Aidan’s workplace pays him a little above Award, gives rostered days off and offers flexible hours. His manager sets clear instructions and guidance, with enough rope to work autonomously, and gives praise and encouragement for his achievements. Aidan speaks highly of his experience and, as a mum, I couldn’t wish for more for my child stepping out into the workforce.

What’s Gen up to?

A client emailed me this week asking, ‘Are you still career coaching?’

YES!!! I am. 🙂 She pointed out that my last post was written in 2019 about the business awards. Well, here I am with what’s been happening in my world since December 2019.

🌸 I had an office built (thought I’d start with the big news!)

🌸 My chickens went broody three times and I now have six lovely chooks (2 roosters!!!)

🌸 I worked with many clients in Melbourne over Zoom who had been affected by redundancy. What I found was that…1) It took longer for them to find their ideal role…2) They valued my support more than ever on helping keep them feeling motivated and positive in the times of lockdown…3) My clients all got jobs that were in their field and rewarding.

🌸 I started a radio show with my friend Ange who is a counsellor. The show is about mental health and wellbeing, called Mind Ya Head and airs each Wednesday at 9am on 94.9 mainFM in Castlemaine.

🌸 I’ve been continuing my volunteer role as Secretary with Business Mount Alexander. Currently working on re-engaging the business community since last year. Have some great networking events coming up.

🌸 On the creative side, I continue to play the guitar, am part of a ukelele group called the Ukettes, plus I’ve joined a gospel choir. Such joyful things to nourish my soul.

🌸 I’m drawn to learning more about mindfulness and have signed up again for Mindful in May, plus I’m studying an online course through FutureLearn/Monash Uni called ‘Maintaining a Mindful Life’.

How are you doing? If you’d like to have a confidential chat about your career goals, you can reach me via gen@thegoodlifecareers.com.au. Go well! 🙏

Smarten up your LinkedIn profile in one hour

by Genevieve WardLinkedIn

Whether I’m coaching job seekers, career changers or people wanting to start a business, they often struggle with LinkedIn. This is because they don’t see the value, are concerned about their privacy or find it’s time consuming for little return.  Continue reading “Smarten up your LinkedIn profile in one hour”

How to Strengthen Your Networking Skills

office-336368_1280Networking is a healthy life skill that’s not just for people in management roles.  It’s for everyone. When I speak with people about networking, some shy away from the concept as it’s seemingly daunting. Comments such as, ‘Nothing could be worse than going to an event and having to make small talk with people.’ I’ll pop some resources at the end of this post with useful networking information for people who feel this way or are more introverted.   Continue reading “How to Strengthen Your Networking Skills”

Are you on LinkedIn?

LinkedInWhen I meet new people in a professional setting I often ask if they are on LinkedIn.  They may be a potential client, someone who can add value to my business or a job seeker I’m working with.  LinkedIn is a professional networking site and many companies use this tool as a means of recruiting staff.

When it comes to landing a job, your LinkedIn profile acts as the online version of your resume.  I’m going to share with you 10 ways to strengthen your profile and ensure you are optimising your professional brand with this online platform. Continue reading “Are you on LinkedIn?”