When Albert Einstein wasn’t busy debunking misconceptions about the fundamental nature of time and space, he had a few interesting things to say about human nature. “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results,” for example, is one of his most well-known utterances and probably one of the more intuitively comprehensible ones, verging even on common sense. Why, then, do so many of us struggle to apply it to our professional lives? Why, according to a recent Gallup poll, do 85% of us turn up every day to jobs that we hate? Presumably, it’s because we don’t have any choice. Actually… no.
A quick glance at LinkedIn reveals countless unfilled vacancies in the US and UK alone (if you insist on counting, however, at the time of writing: 7,123,401 and 1,634,108 jobs respectively). What’s more, it’s estimated that at least 70% of jobs are not even advertised. The chances are, if you have a job, there is a better one out there waiting for you and you’re qualified to do it.
So what’s holding you and the rest of the 85% back? Well, change, of course or – more accurately – the prospect of change and the fear of uncertainty. No matter how bad our situation is, our brain’s limbic system would rather live with the devil we know than meet a new one. That’s normal and, in a sense, rational but the problem is that our limbic system evolved to make us fear change because it meant risking death by lion or being ejected from the tribe that protected us. If you have a job that isn’t engaging you, in which you spend at least 8 hours a day doing - or pretending to do - something you don’t value, then your limbic system really needs to pipe down; you’re already experiencing one of the most unpleasant situations that life in a developed society has to offer. So don’t worry; there’s almost certainly something better out there and there’s nothing to fear in going for it.
That doesn’t mean that these opportunities should be treated lightly. It’s crucial that, as you put yourself out there on the job market, you absolutely make the most of each chance you get. It all starts with a bit of window shopping. Don’t be afraid of being ambitious. While there’s no point in applying for a role that you clearly aren’t suited to, you’re looking for a position that’s going to excite and reward you, not the job you’ve already got. Since you landed your current position, you’ve become even more valuable; you’ve gained experience - possibly skills and contacts too - so make sure you’re shopping for something that inspires you, fits your values and leads to even greater things.
Start with LinkedIn and Glassdoor; this is a great first step as it’ll give you a good idea as to what’s out there at the moment. Now is a great time to think about all your contacts and start asking around too; you never know what’s available within your network. Finally, take a look at the websites of any companies that really interest you; they could be advertising your dream job and even if they’re not, it’s well worth sending your C.V and a great cover letter to let them know you’re interested. Most vacancies aren’t advertised, remember? After doing this for a little while, you should be able to start compiling a list of some really interesting prospects.
At Shewbridge Coaching, we’ll ensure that each application you make is as good as it possibly can be, that you are marketing yourself in the right way, demonstrating the best of you. Depending on what you need, we will be with you every step of the way, from initial application to the end of the selection process.
Interview coaching is at the heart of what we do and is, by far, the most challenging part of the application process for most people. Matthew Shewbridge will work with you over two sessions, making sure that you are fully prepared to give your best interview. After the first session, you will receive a beautiful, detailed report that highlights the strongest parts of your offer as well as those that require further practise alone. By the end of the second session, you will have great answers for all the most likely questions (yes, even that one!) and know exactly how to deal with any unexpected ones too. We will also make sure you are armed with some great questions to ask if invited to.
You will approach your interview safe in the knowledge that you are fully prepared, on top of your game and even looking forward to your chance to shine!
Take a look here to see more information about our packages and choose the best one for you. Or just contact us to arrange your free, no obligation introductory session with Matthew Shewbridge.
There’s nothing stopping you now. If you want a better job, get it. Take a look online and see what takes your fancy and make sure to have Shewbridge Coaching in your corner!