Job Hunters Guilt

I am not sure if that is the technical term for this subject or not but it’s important to discuss. Are you in a position where you’re unhappy with your current job or career path? If you said yes keep reading.  If you said no, this might be a waste.  If you’re on the fence, go back to some earlier posts about pullers and core values.

Sometimes we get into situations where leaving our current position is harder or more stressful than chasing after things we truly want.  

Quick example: I LOVED working in education.  But the job required me to be reachable on a NY state civil service test.  I didnt get a high enough score and I was cut from my position.  It sucked a lot.  And I cried,  a lot. But it dawned on me during all of this boo-hooing that I was so upset because I was getting so comfortable.  It had crossed my mind that maybe working for a school is what wanted to do for a living.  Just maybe it was what I wanted.  I was doing a decent job of convincing myself of that as well. Comfort can be a great thing, but had I not lost that job, I don’t think I would have applied for this new job that I now have.  And let me tell you, the perks and new experiences that this job has to offer is out of this world. I like how this guy explains the need to being uncomfortable.  
Not only would I not have applied for this job but I’m not sure about any job in the near future, let alone graduate school.  I hadn’t even begun to think about courses.  Now I’m gearing up for the fall 2017 online semester. 
Luckily I lost my job, because I can tell you that I was feeling guilty for leaving such a nice place. Nice people, work, days off, benefits. You name it, they have it.  Employees are treated really well there! But at some point I would’ve had to leave in order to fulfill my career goals.  

We can not let the guilt of leaving great people or work behind get in our way.  Pretend you were in my situation, would you want to have a job before losing it, or be out of a job scrambling for work.  Build your career, and look out for yourself.  It’s worth it. 

The best advice I can offer, is to talk to your boss now.  Even if they are the meanest, most rotten boss.  You’ll always be a good employee for keeping an open relationship with your boss.  This way he knows that he will need to find someone to replace you and can start thinking about the change.  It’s like giving him notice that you’ll be putting in your two week notice.  Communication is most definitely key for this task. Good luck out there.  

How Did I Get Here (part 2)

This morning I mustered up the courage to ask a few co workers why they chose me.  Like I had said in Monday’s post, I knew I would be capable of the new job but I had hoped that my now co-workers saw that I those qualities in me.  Well as Monday began my new adventure I decided to ask what I had that they wanted.

Their response: 

While I learned that they did like my background and expeience, I was pretty much hired based on things not indicated on my resume. One co-worker said that they had liked my ability to answer the questions directly. I wasn’t going in circles, but cut to the chase and gave a clear, but detailed answers.  I also received feedback that they enjoyed the initial phone interview with me.  

Hello, give me a job

I had no idea that the few questions they asked me about my application was considered a phone interview.  It was great to get the feedback to learn a little more of what they considered as good interview answers and such.  Turns out, what I thought was just a simple phone conversation was truly my first impression.  My phone interviewer even had me pegged as their favorite candidate. 

My takeaway:

So I really did learn a lot about myself and my interview skills.  I’ve noticed in the last year and a half (where I’ve accepted 3 “big girl” jobs) that those that have hired me have done it based on their ability to detect that I’m moldable.  Meaning they can turn me into a devoted employee to that company.  They have all been completely right thus far.  I still LOVE going to target even after quitting.  And working for a school district makes me point out a school whenever we drive by one.  

Photo credits: Wikipedia
To get to my point I did learn that I have good interviewing skills in terms of showing employers that I’m a hard working dedicated employee. Those are some great qualities.  But I have a lot to learn still because I now have some decent experience in a few areas, but I need to convey that previous experience in the future.  This isn’t a failure this is just something I need to work on if I want to get where I want to be.  

How Everything You Do Can Help Your Career.

So in one of my previous posts I talked about Pushers vs. Pullers.  Click here to learn more.  I mentioned how I want you to create as many pullers for yourself as possible.   A reader of mine brought to my attention that I didn’t exactly tell you all about plowing the way for your future and creating pullers for yourself.  So let me tell you about some of my pullers:

  • After leaving Target, I took a job in Human Resources knowing that it was potentially a temporary position.  I had to take a New York State Civil Service Exam and score within the top three people to keep my job.  I knew I would have about a year in the position before I would discover the results of my test.  So while I of course wanted to keep my job, I worked my butt off for that entire year (partially) assuming that I wouldn’t be keeping my position.
    • Why it is a puller: Even though I didn’t get a high enough score on the test, my supervisor fought for me.  He tried to see if I could keep my job.  Furthermore, he found me a short term position that would give me some work until I found another position. Not to mention, both of my supervisors are great professional references. I figured that if I worked really hard, my supervisors would help me in my next steps after my position ended.   Don’t get me wrong it sucked losing that position, I loved what I did.  I loved it so much that I offered to help train the person that took over my position.  On the other hand, I gained so much from that position.
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Do work like a boss, and like your Boss
  • My sophomore year of college I took a class which studied older adulthood and the Baby boomer generation that was/is entering that stage.  I had the opportunity to take an additional credit through the class by volunteering at the local nursing homes.  I really wanted that extra college credit and I knew I would be helping the local community.  bingoWell, I quickly learned that playing BINGO in the nursing home was fine, I could NEVER (I can’t stress that word enough) work with people in the nursing home.  They were nice people but it is a field or cohort I couldn’t work with.  I didn’t hate it, but it didn’t love it.
    • Why it’s a puller: It taught me what I didn’t want to do in my future.  Instead of devoting time looking into positions in Hospice or with local nursing homes, I stayed well away from that area.  Kudos to those who work in that field, but it is not for me.  Volunteering pulled me to try something completely different from older adults.  Which is how I found an internship with the Career Services center and LOVED (can’t stress that enough either) it.

Take a look at Krystal-Bella’s post here.  Krystal-Bella has an inspiring story of how she is turning something difficult from her life and turns it into a puller by sharing it with others.  Not to mention she works a full-time job and still creates blog and vlog posts all the time.  Her story is a great example of how you can turn anything into a puller.  Krystal-Bella, thank you for sharing! It’s not always what life gives you but how you make life work for you.  

 

 

Job Hunting vs. Career Building

I think this would be a great time to talk about the differences between looking for a job and building a career.  More often than not, we say we are job hunting when we might actually mean building our careers.  We often under-use the term career building.  When people ask “what are you up to?” nine times out of ten, they are curious to know how successful you are.  People don’t typically ask “what are you working towards?”. That would be a much more meaningful way to ask you about how you’re building your career.   The fact that people misconstrue these two phrases allows them to also confuse the terms job hunting and career building. 

I consider job hunting the short term solution.  Job seekers are looking for something to do immediately.  To look for a job, means that for whatever reason you need a change in pace now.  If you are unemployed or your boss is driving you absolutely crazy, those are factors or “pushers” as I’ll call them, that push you to get a job.  I am in no way saying that pushers are bad motivators.  Hey, I need money to pay for those student loans I accumulated, and a good paying job just like the rest of us. However, pushers in our lives are very important to overcome in order to make us happy.  If your boss makes you miserable, then he/she is one of your pushers to get you into a new position.  Pushers can be identified as many things but typically they will be things that you do not have control over.  Your boss, pay, or job duties can all be seen as pushers.

You can probably guess that career building is what I would consider to be the long term solution.  Career building has a lot to do with building up your experiences to achieve your end career goal or goals.  You’ll want to go after things that will help you reach your goals and try hard to create the path to your future.  These things that keep us driven I consider to be “pullers”.  Pullers are typically things that we can control and work towards to achieve.  If getting a Master’s degree is something you need for a job (*raises hand slowly*), then going for that degree is a puller.  Getting an education is an obvious puller, but jobs can  be pullers too.  Working in the education field is a puller for me.  I do not work in higher education, but it is still a place that has pulled me into working towards my dream.  If I began working as a custodian on a college campus, that could also be a puller job. Working up the chain in an industry is a well known technique for career building.  The key thing to remember with pullers, is that they are what you make of them. Volunteering or creating a blog can also be pullers.  Think outside of the box for some good pullers.

While there is a difference to be established between pushers and pullers the same experience can be shifted from one to the other.  Do not let these shifts get you confused to what you want or need to do in life.  I always say work towards building a career for yourself.  If you are wondering what kind of pullers are out there for you take a look at this link.  Wallethub did a great job of putting together some entry level positions that might show you what positions will pull or push you. They’re ranking system might not match yours, but they did us a favor by listing out over 100 entry level jobs.  If your trying to change or start your career entry level jobs are great pullers.  

What someone sees as a puller might be a pusher for you.  This is where job hunting and career building can get confusing.  Job hunting is not career building.  Pushers and pullers are the factors that contribute to whether you hunt or build. I suggest working your best towards the pullers and removing the pushers from your life.  Sometimes,  that simply means changing your thoughts on your current situation.  I thought my job in education was a pusher job.  It was just going to fill the time I needed to get my next degree.  Turns out, this field is a great puller to get into higher education.  You might not have to change your environment to learn that you have many pullers helping you along the way.