One of the most common questions we address in our coaching at Après is: How do a I find a job when I’m not sure what to do?

It’s an overwhelming question because often there are a million things that interest us, or that we used to do, or that we want to do. And sometimes, especially when returning to work after a career break, we find our confidence has taken such a hit that we can’t remember what we’re good at.

However, getting clear on what jobs to pursue will make the process much faster and much smoother. One thing to consider in the process to narrow your options is something I call the 5 M’s — five motivators that will help you weed out jobs or employers quickly. They’re simple in concept but critical in a successful job search:

  1. MUST – This is the reality that you must get a job. Perhaps the financial situation in your household has changed — someone may have lost a job or there’s a divorce or an illness or even a death. It could be for benefits or because there’s a new expense that requires more income.
  2. MIND – This is your brain telling you it needs more — more engagement, more challenge, new information or something to learn.
  3. MONEY – Money can be a serious motivator and this is OK! Maybe you have a financial goal for yourself or your family in mind?
  4. MEANING – You want to make a difference or have an impact on the world — education, mental health, nutrition, climate change, poverty, build products that make people’s lives better or easier.
  5. MODELING – This one could also be swapped with MESSAGING. For some it’s important to show their kids that they work and can be a mom. One of my coaching clients added that it’s important for her to model to a younger generation of workers that it is possible to be a mom and work. To take a career break AND return to the workforce. What do you want to message / model to others?

Think about these motivators and rank them. What opportunities do they present? Which ones do they rule out? Make some notes to keep them straight in your head and rank them. For example, if benefits are critical, this may not be the right time to freelance. Working for a non profit might be a great option if meaning is at the top of your list, but wouldn’t be if a big income was important to you.

Take a look at rank them for yourself, then keep them in mind as you consider what’s next.

It is Your Turn!