When looking to take the next step in your career, your next move should not be taken lightly. Stepping back into the job market from your current role is exciting, but it is important to have a clear idea of where you want to go next. Here are a few things to consider when searching for your next role and finding your next dream company to join.

1. Where are you in your career?

How experienced are you? How specialized are you? What are you looking for in your next role and why? Think critically about your current position and what direction you want your next role to take you. A great exercise is to look at people who have the job you want. Reach out to them and ask them their story. Understanding how they got there can be a great starting point as you draw out your roadmap.

2. How do you present yourself?

Please – no resume blasts. Keep your resume off those sites like Indeed and others. Unless you’re looking for an entry-level position, it will only hurt your candidacy. You want companies to think you’re special. When your resume is all over the internet, you will get lost in a sea of other applicants. An executive search firm is a great partner in helping to present you in the best possible way.

3. What are the industries and companies you are most excited by?  

Make a list of brands and companies you love and ask yourself why you love them. What is a space your interested in? What companies are doing something innovative in that space? What are the issues facing this industry? Who is the number one player? Identify companies and individuals that you believe can help you achieve your goals. Be methodical and build a list, then find out ways to get in touch with these companies personally. Work is a huge part of your life, so you want to be working in a space you’re passionate about with people you find inspiring.

4. How do you evaluate these companies?

Now that you have companies you’re interested in, or maybe even are interviewing with, it is important to understand them beyond the surface. Does this company solve a problem? Where does this company rank amongst its competitors? What is the ownership structure? Are they venture backed? Who are their investors? You want to be joining a company with a bright future, so find out just how bright it shines.

5. What are the growth opportunities?

Think of your five-year plan. How does this role and this company fit into that plan? Will this job help you reach your goals? Will it give you opportunities to learn? Ask the hiring manager what this role lends itself to in terms of professional growth. Tell them what you see want your career to look like. Going into a new position with vision will help you stay focused and on track for achieving your goals.

6. What is the employee turnover rate?

It is helpful to look at other employees to evaluate a company’s culture. Are people happy there? If a lot of people are coming and going, why? Chances are if the company has trouble retaining talent, you may find yourself looking for another position sooner than you’d. A high retention rate is a great sign, as it shows that employees are growing professionally and have a lot of confidence in the company and the team around them.

7. Can you succeed here?

While you want to think about your own professional growth, you will also want to think about how your efforts will affect the company’s future. Do you think you can positively contribute to their success? Will you be able to handle the challenges of the role and the challenges that face the company overall? If you feel like a company is asking you to do the impossible, they may not be a great fit for you. Challenges are great and will help you grow, but if the goals and/or challenges feel unfeasible at the beginning, they probably won’t change.

8. Would you invest?

This is by far the most important question. You may not be investing your own capital in the company, but you will be investing a lot of your time. Since time is money, do you think this company deserves your investment? Do you believe in the product and/or service? Do you believe in the mission? Do you believe in the C-level executives? Evaluate the company like an investor would, only your contribution isn’t money, it is your time and your future.

Working with an executive search firm can help you achieve these goals as they have relationships with these companies, the boards and have a strong understanding of what the organization needs and their culture. Whether you’re searching for your next career move or looking for the perfect hire for an open position, please contact us to discuss your needs further.