mike-ncxcq
mike-ncxcq
Post Karma: 1 | Comment Karma: 6
ūüďć Los Angeles, CA
ūüďĖ Southern California Director of ORT America. I had some great success when job searching, and learned a lot along the way. I then found I enjoy helping others succeed in their own job searches.
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I am currently a regional director for a nonprofit and I am mostly happy.  No job will make you 100% happy and you shouldn't let your job be the sole source of your happiness. Cultivate a life and relationships outside of work. These are what really matter anyway. This is my sixth different job since graduating 13 years ago, and my first was in professional sports.

It is okay if you don't know what you want to do. You can do almost anything and some of your peers who have spent years studying to be doctors or lawyers don't have the flexibility you do. Know that your first job won't be your last, so you don't need to pressure yourself to find your "calling". It will find you and even if it takes a long time. Remember, the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world are are the exception to the rule. For 99% of us, it takes decades of work until we are the most successful in our careers.

To help narrow down your options, I would focus on your current skills and experiences, and look for jobs that align. If you don't have much experience yet, try to get some. Employers want to hire people with skills and experiences that prove you can do that job. For example, if you want to work in professional sports like I did, look for jobs at your university's athletic department.

Go to your university's Career Center and utilize their help. If you are still unsure what field you want to work in, look at your current interests. What subjects do you find yourself gravitating to online? What topics get you really passionate? Politics? Sports? Entertainment? What was your dream job as a kid? If that is too unrealistic now, break down what excited you about that job and try to find others that are related. E.g. if you wanted to be an astronaut because you love space, look for a job (or volunteer) at a local observatory or science center.

Go on "Informational Interviews" with people in jobs or companies you are interested in. For example, if you are thinking about being a brain surgeon, utilize your current network (ask your doctor), get introduced to one, and invite them for coffee or lunch.  Ask them questions about what their job or company is really like, what is hard about it, etc. You may be surprised to find a job is different than you thought, and a little bit of research just saved you many years and hundreds of thousands of dollars in tuition. On the other hand, you may find you really like something and you just made a great contact within a company. And that almost always gets your resume read.

Good luck and remember that it will all work out. Your first job (or second, third, fourth...) are like bad dates or relationships:  each experience will teach you about what you like and don't, what you're good at and what you're not, what you love and what you hate...  and that will ultimately lead you to finding The One.

I have been there and it is not a great feeling. Job hopping, while once frowned upon, is becoming so common that many employers don't mind. There's really no telling what a prospective employer will think of  job history. As long as you don't make a habit of it, a few times over a career won't be too bad, especially when you're younger. In fact, staying in one position for too long, especially at a lower level, can look bad.

Unless your current job is really harmful to your physical or mental health (e.g. abuse,  harassment, illegal behavior, etc.) you should not quit until you find a new job. All else being equal, you look far more attractive with a job than without. 

Could you stick it out for at least a year? Can you talk to your employer and add responsibilities and tasks that you would enjoy? You can keep an eye out for new jobs, but only apply to the ones that would be an improvement. You don't want to go from one bad job to another.  Also, use this as a learning experience. Really try to understand if the next job, boss, or company are right for you. Job interviewing goes both ways. 

Also, consider how you will describe why you are leaving to future employers. When  asked, you might say something like "I really like my job but when I saw this position, I knew I couldn't pass up applying. It is what I really want to be doing because..."  Tell them why you really want the position and how they would benefit from having you there.

Good luck!