How to Find Meaningful Work

Recently a shift has occurred in the minds of employees. No longer are people working for just a paycheck. Increasing numbers of people want to make a difference in the world through their job. Meaning is becoming more important. Being able to believe in a company’s purpose is more important. How do you find work that will bring more satisfaction without sacrificing the pay? We brought on Nathaniel Koloc from ReWork to find out. Here are some of the things we talked about:

It’s not a career ladder. If you want to be happy, you need to get the idea of a career ladder out of your head. That’s very limiting. To pursue the career ladder, you have to be content staying with one position for a long time. Instead, think about your career in a non-linear fashion. It’s okay to move sideways and even backwards in order to gain skills and knowledge to build a strong career portfolio. Be strategic and think about positions that will serve you in your long-term goals.

Feed the World

Decide it’s important. If you want to do meaningful work in the world, you have to decide that it really is important and a priority to you. Often the idea briefly passes through our heads, and we don’t do much with it. If you want to make a change, decide and commit to making a change.

Research the industry. Not in the industry you want to be in? Start researching it. Find out what skills they value and what types of jobs they are hiring for. Begin to understand how your current skill-set aligns with what the companies are seeking. After you do that, you will understand if there is a gap.

Don’t go all in. If there is a gap, don’t go all in. Instead, do the minimum next step that will get you in the door. It may not be a great idea to spend the next eight years getting a PhD when you might be able to get a position in the industry with a basic certification.

Volunteer. If there is a gap, and it’s going to take time to bridge the gap, start volunteering in the industry. This doesn’t mean you need to hand out fliers or go to the jungle (although you can if you find satisfaction in that). These companies most likely need skills you have. They need accountants, IT-savvy people, marketers, etc. Volunteer your abilities and starting learning more about the industry.

Nathaniel had tips to share on how to find these companies and much more. Listen to the entire interview here!

Jana Axline is president and leadership coach at Axline Solutions and author of Becoming You. Through her leadership musings she inspires audiences to grow as leaders and ultimately achieve who they were created to be. For more information visit Axline Solutions.

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