Completion time:

Take at least an hour of uninterrupted time to complete this part. You may want to take a break or two to reflect on your results.

The profile of your dream job

The path to employment prospects began with your profile. You found out what inspires you, what you can do well, and what is important to you, gathering lots of ideas along the way. The next impulses will enable you to filter key terms from these steps: issues and activities that come up frequently in your notes. These recurring terms are your keywords, which help you to describe your envisaged job in more detail. Your description will now become increasingly specific.

This is a complex step. To keep track of things, you may want to use the "Dream job & reality check" work aid (below for download).

Collect, cluster, combine and prioritise keywords

This is where you can arrange and cluster keywords from the previous steps, providing you with an overall picture. This should enable you to glean the direction of your preferences. Now you need to combine them and give them a weighting: which tasks and issues are particularly important to you? Which of these issues would you like to address directly in your profession (immediate content and tasks)? Which are you okay to deal with indirectly (e.g. in an extended environment, in the sector)? Which can be covered in other areas of your life (hobbies, voluntary work)? This will enable you to draw up a list of priorities so as to create the first profile for your envisaged job.

Check your requirements

It could be that your wish list contains everything that you want this job to be. You therefore need to filter and check again: which of your criteria are must-haves, and which are maybes? An if-then-else comparison may help break down any mental blocks - if one criterion is met, then another can be ignored. For example: moving to a new city is okay, as long as it is only for a year. This enables you to select your criteria and get a clearer idea of your ideal job.

Match profiles

Now use the refined profile of your dream job to undertake initial matching: which of the requirements for the job do you fulfil? To do this, draw up a table with the job profile in one column and your profile (your qualifications and experience) in the other, and compare the two. You will be able to see how well the two match, i.e. in which ways you are able to meet the criteria of your ideal job. By doing this, you have also defined the terms describing what you are looking for, and what you have to offer.

Get to know your dream job

To get a realistic picture of your potential professional, look for positions that involve at least some of your dream job's must-haves. Simply enter keywords from the matching table and individual tasks involved in your ideal job. You will then see where the things that you are looking for are needed. This will enable you to proactively contact companies of interest to ask about the possibility of job shadowing, internships, part-time work, project involvement or voluntary work. Perhaps there is a job posting among them that you want to apply for straight away. The next step shows you how to search for jobs and prepare unsolicited applications.

Realistic job prospects

Your realistic job prospects lie in the intersection of your abilities, your wishes, and what the labour market has to offer you. You can improve your prospects on the labour market by expanding your abilities, such as by completing training or gaining experience, and by showing a greater willingness to compromise, e.g. willingness to travel for work. Matching is an essential aspect of realistically assessing your prospects.

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