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How to Get a Job You Love

Getting a job is hard enough, but finding one that fits your passions, skills, and personal life is a whole other challenge. Studies show that when employees enjoy their work, they are up to 13% more productive. So, whether you are working in a field that is too repetitive or not challenging enough or simply want to get out of the cubicle for good, it’s important to learn how to get a job you love.

There’s no magic formula for getting a job you love, but starting with your skillset, career aspirations, and personality type can help narrow the search. During the interview process, don’t focus on what the job description says you need to know; instead, consider how your past experience and talents match up with the company‚Äôs culture and mission. For example, if you are a creative person who thrives on collaboration and is drawn to nonprofits, you might find the perfect job at a small art studio that needs a graphic designer.

When applying for jobs, make sure your resume and cover letter are up to date. Revisiting them with a fresh set of eyes can help you catch mistakes, and it’s also an opportunity to highlight any new skills or experiences that have developed over time. Then, sift through the online applications that you’ve received and prioritize those for which you are a strong match. For example, if you’re an expert in your field and have years of industry experience, it’s reasonable to apply for positions that require a minimum of five years of experience.

If you’re lucky enough to have people in your network who know you’re looking, ask them for recommendations for opportunities. Reach out to them with verbiage they can use to describe you, such as “hard-working professional who excels in customer service.” This helps them put a face to your name and will increase the likelihood that they can introduce you to someone within their networks.

Prioritize applying to employers that have a lot of open positions to fill, as they will likely be more willing to take a risk on you than those with fewer openings. But, don’t apply for jobs that are outside of your skill level, as this will be frustrating and time-consuming.

Before you start scouring job postings, make a list of your dealbreakers. Identify things that you will not accept, such as a salary below what you’d like to earn or a job requirement that goes against your values. You’ll be glad you did this when you land a job that is truly fulfilling.