What happens when everyone passes a pet store? Of course the initial response is ahhhhh, I want one! With all of the cute puppies wagging their tails and showing their sad eyes that say, “take me home,” I am sure that most of you want to take one home and have them join your family.
In the event you decide to purchase and take one of those cute puppies home, you will soon realize that along with the happiness and love the new addition brings, there is also a lot of work! House training, dealing with chewed up shoes and furniture, a lot of barking and the daily walks (no matter the weather) can all pose challenges and in some cases a little stress. For first time pet owners, they rarely can see and know what is waiting for them when they make that purchase at the pet store.
I would like to tie this feeling and action into a career or job change for those that are making a change for the first or second time. When someone buys a puppy for the first time, they are overwhelmed with positive emotion. Equally so, job changers many times are only focused on the new company and roles positive aspects. The positive feeling can also come from the feeling of newness.
My advice to first or second time job seekers (and for those that change jobs too frequently) is to of course be excited and positively motivated by new opportunities, but to also consider everything about a company and the responsibilities and requirements they will have. In short, think about the “house training” and all of the required tasks you are expected to complete to ensure you are successful. How? A few quick questions can ensure you not only know what is in store for you, but also what to expect when the great feeling of “newness” wears off.
- Understand what is expected of you and the role. Of course you will get a list of your responsibilities from the job description and from the interview process, but be sure to ask specifics. For example, ask what the daily and weekly requirements of the role are. Ask what would make someone standout and succeed. The more questions you ask about what you are required to deliver, the more you will understand what your new potential employer will expect from you.
- Assuming the interview process is going well and you are toward the end of the interview process, ask what goals the company has and why working there would be a great career move (be careful when to ask this and make sure you have good rapport with the hiring manager). What makes the company unique, different and if it is important to you, their corporate social responsibility?
- Ask about the career path of the role if you are exceeding all company and job expectations. Many interviewers ask candidates what they want to be doing in 2 or 5 years’ time. Flip this around and ask if you are performing well and meeting all expectations, what the possible career path could be (again, be mindful of the timing and technique of asking this. Don’t come across as interviewing the interviewer or the result will not be positive). In addition, what are the company’s growth or expansion plans?
Now that you have a clear understanding of 1. What you are expected to deliver and the expectation they have of you; 2. The company’s vision, purpose and direction; and then 3. By putting in the hard work to exceed your requirements and where that leads, you should then have enough information to make a well thought out and clear decision. Yes, the newness is fun and exciting, but are you willing to “walk the dog” every day for the years ahead to get you to that professional place you want to be? So, before you decide to move and take a new opportunity, be sure you know all there is to make the most informed decision possible. If you do, you will have no problem dealing with the house training, feeding responsibilities and the daily walk requirement of your new job or career!