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7 Questions You Must Ask Before Your Next Job Application

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Assuming you have the luxury of a bit of time and space in your job search, it's a smart idea to give each application some serious thought. Roughly one-third of your life is spent at work, and as you probably can attest, looking for the right job is an exhausting, time-consuming pursuit on its own.

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7 Questions You Must Ask Before Your Next Job Application

  1. 7 Questions You Must Ask Before Your Next Job Application
  2. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Title Text Introduction 7 Questions You Must Ask Before Your Next Job Application When applying for a new job, applicants (especially younger job seekers) often fall into the trap of going out of their way to prove that they are right for the job. But do you ever stop to ask yourself if the job is right for you?
  3. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Assuming you have the luxury of a bit of time and space in your job search, it's a smart idea to give each application some serious thought. Roughly one-third of your life is spent at work, and as you probably can attest, looking for the right job is an exhausting, time-consuming pursuit on its own. So it’s important to do everything you can to determine if a job or company is going to be a good fit before you take the job. Asking yourself a few questions as you’re filling out applications can help save you from a poor decision — and another job search down the line.
  4. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Is this really the right job for me? A broad question, to be sure, but an important one. Ask yourself: • Why you’re applying for that particular job? • Do you admire the company? • Is it your dream job? • Do you like the sound of the work? Any reason is valid as long as you're aware of it and okay with it. But it's valuable to be conscious of your reasons during the application process.
  5. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Do my values align with the job and the company? Examples of a values clash can range from minor to extreme. Of course, you don't want to be working for a meat packing plant if you're an avowed vegan, but there are subtler reasons your values might not align with a company as well. For example, studies show that younger workers tend to value flexibility and work-life balance much more highly than their Baby Boomer counterparts; if a company doesn't offer flex time or remote work opportunities, those who appreciate flexibility might not be happy there in the long run. Or, perhaps family is a key value, but the company demands long hours and lots of weekends at work. That too would be a values clash.
  6. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved What is my work personality? Your work personality might include things like preferring to work alone or on a team? Are you a leader or a follower? Do you like to cooperate with others or compete? Are you a creative person who needs flexibility, or a logical thinker who thrives on structure and routine? There’s no right or wrong answer in general, but it’s helpful to know what you prefer so that you can determine if your work personality will fit into the culture of the company you’re applying to. A creative, cooperative person who loves to collaborate with others probably won’t thrive in a highly competitive sales job where employees are pitted against one another to meet rigid quotas.
  7. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved What are my most valuable skills? Businesses often talk about their “unique selling proposition,” or the thing that sets them apart from their competitors. As a job applicant, you have a unique selling proposition, too. You have skills, experience, talents, or personality traits that set you apart from the pool of other candidates. When you're thinking about this, don't stop at superficial or common descriptions like "detail-oriented" or "punctual." Dig deep and really think about the unique qualities you bring to your work that the company will appreciate.
  8. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Will that job take me a step closer to where I want to be? If you're leaving a current job because of a lack of growth opportunities, or because it's not on the career path you really want to be on, it's essential to ensure that any new position will fix that problem. A lateral move isn't likely to make you happy in the long run if what you really want is growth. Promotions aren't the only way you can grow in your career. It's worth finding out if a company offers ongoing training or mentorship that can help you get to where you want to go. And if you don't know exactly where you want to be heading, now is the time to do some serious self-reflection and figure it out.
  9. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved You probably know why you want to leave your current job, but have you thought about what you would change to make it better? Sometimes we leave a job for personal reasons, like a nasty co-worker or uninvolved boss. Other times we decide to leave because the work isn’t challenging, there aren’t any growth opportunities, or even that the commute is too long. Don’t forget or gloss over the reasons you’re unhappy in your current or previous job, and ask yourself, what can you do to ensure that you won’t have these problems in your new job? What would I want to change in my current job?
  10. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved This may sound like an odd question, but it's a great way to help determine what's truly important to you. If a great opportunity came along but didn't include… X, would you still take the job? Your X-factor might be just about anything: flex time, stock options, free coffee in the break room, health benefits, retirement plans, vacation time, the salary you want. Asking yourself which things you could live without, and which are non-negotiables can help you narrow down your choices and make difficult decisions if it comes down to choosing between two different opportunities. What am I willing to give up?
  11. © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Once you've spent some time thinking about these questions, you can confidently assess whether you feel each application is a good fit for you. It may seem counterintuitive to ask that a job meets your specifications (instead of the other way around) but in the long run, you and your employer will both get more out of the relationship when you go in confident that you'll be happy and fulfilled.
  12. © 2017 Bernard Marr , Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Bernard Marr is an internationally best-selling author, popular keynote speaker, futurist, and a strategic business & technology advisor to governments and companies. He helps organisations improve their business performance, use data more intelligently, and understand the implications of new technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data, blockchains, and the Internet of Things. LinkedIn has ranked Bernard as one of the world’s top 5 business influencers. He is a frequent contributor to the World Economic Forum and writes a regular column for Forbes. Every day Bernard actively engages his 1.5 million social media followers and shares content that reaches millions of readers. Visit The Website © 2017 Bernard Marr , Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved © 2018 Bernard Marr, Bernard Marr & Co. All rights reserved Bernard Marr is an internationally best-selling author, popular keynote speaker, futurist, and a strategic business & technology advisor to governments and companies. He helps organisations improve their business performance, use data more intelligently, and understand the implications of new technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data, blockchains, and the Internet of Things. LinkedIn has ranked Bernard as one of the world’s top 5 business influencers. He is a frequent contributor to the World Economic Forum and writes a regular column for Forbes. Every day Bernard actively engages his 1.5 million social media followers and shares content that reaches millions of readers. Visit The Website
  13. BernardMarr hello@bernardmarr.com www.bernardmarr.com

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