When looking at a job on its standalone merits, you need to evaluate it in the context of your career and goals. A job might be terrific but not for you. There is no one set of criteria to measure the merits of a job. However, here are 10 questions to explore as you evaluate a new job opportunity:
1) Does the job meet your immediate needs?
At each stage of your career, there will be different near-term goals that you have for that next job. At a minimum, the opportunities you pursue should meet these immediate needs.
2) Will the role contribute towards your long-term career goal?
If your ultimate goal is Chief Financial Officer and you want your next role to have an international scope, then you prioritize international but still look at how much financial exposure and skills development the role will provide overall.
3) Will the role complement work you enjoy?
If you are not sure what your ultimate career goal is, you should at least look to build a body of work that points to a functional or industry expertise.
4) Will the work fill in critical skills or experience gaps?
Even as the next job builds on your past, it also gives you something new in terms of skills or experience. If you are mid-career and driving towards a specific long-term goal, like CFO, then each next job should fill in a gap in your background that is currently missing.
5) Do the responsibilities scare you a little?
You want the next job to be a stretch, but if you’re too scared, this might be an indication that the job is too big a leap or perhaps the employer’s goals are unrealistic.
6) Is the environment aligned with your values?
You want the role to scare you, not your environment. There are many different structures, hierarchies and cultures, and you want to select one where you will thrive.
7) Is the offer competitive?
It may make sense to take a lateral salary or even a pay cut. You want to make sure the offer is competitive for the role, the industry and the value you’re bringing.
8) How does this job compare to other alternatives?
If you don’t have other alternatives to compare, then how do you know there isn’t something better – more challenging, more aligned with your work style, more highly compensated?
9) Do you feel pulled or pushed?
You want to make sure that the next job is truly something that interests you for its merits and not just because you want to get out of a bad situation where you are in your current job.
10) Does the job feel right?
If the job seems right as you analyze it but doesn’t feel right, you need to do more due diligence to uncover why your gut is giving you these warning signs.
Proper evaluation requires that you know yourself – what do you want, where do you thrive, what are your talents and gaps – so if you don’t, take additional time to build that self-awareness. Finally, take enough time that you can listen to your intuition and gut feelings amidst all the anxiety and excitement of a new opportunity.
Source: Forbes written by Caroline Ceniza-Levine