“Don’t ever give up on what you want to be.” — Bill Kirby, owner, Russell Montgomery & Associates LLC and OI Partners
Sometimes I wonder if I have been going about this whole post-college job hunt the correct way. I intern. I take on outside projects (e.g., blogging for The InternView). I keep up with my own blog. I network. I pass out business cards. I drive nine and a half hours to Chicago to network there. But, what is it all for? It has been almost a year, and I feel like I have nothing to show for it.
I see friends and acquaintances finding their own golden opportunities. And although I am more than thrilled for them, I can’t help but be a bit envious.
But, I may have finally figured it out. It is not my for my lack of trying that I don’t have that ideal after college job; it is for my lack of actually knowing what it is that I want. Simply put, I do not know what I really want to do or where I want to be. I think I know, but I do I really?
The key to solving this dilemma I currently find myself in may be to create a strategic plan (as explained by Bill Kirby at today’s career transition group meeting).
- Step #1: Environmental Scan
When considering your skill set, instead of looking at it from the same ‘ole perspective, try to figure out how you can apply them within different markets. For example, a journalist can write well and obviously knows how to deal with the media, perhaps these skills would suit him/her well within the public relations industry.
To illustrate this point, Kirby used a bullseye target. He explained that you are the middle and each ring represents your skills in a different market. As you pull back from the center, the skills, although important, become less and less helpful in each subsequent market.
- Step #2: Creating a Vision
- Who are you? What am I best suited for? What is my dream job? Answer these questions to help create a vivid description of your dream job.
- If you won the lottery tomorrow, what would you want to do next (after all the big spending and the traveling)? We all want travel and live luxuriously, but what do we do after we’re burnt out on cruises and fruity drinks?
- Create a stretch goal by describing your ultimate dream job of dream jobs.
- Step #3: Cross the Gap
What do you need to do in order to make your dream job come true? What training to do you need? In other words, there is something keeping you from getting that job tomorrow (for me, one thing would be experience); what needs to be done to fix that?
While taking my notes, I was also trying to answer the questions for myself. Unfortunately, I don’t have all the answers figured out quite yet. But, as a read in an article about Jenni Blake, author of Life After College, it is perfectly fine if you don’t have all the answers at first. If you can at least put something down on paper, that is a start.