Chapter 7: Bruised and Gun-shy
Step 2: Explore Roadblocks and Opportunities
OK, you've made it out of a bad situation! But are you prepared should you find yourself in another one?
Well, here are a few things you can do when a prospective job appears:
- Assess your prospective boss. The boss is on his or her best behavior during the interview, just like you are. So if anything seems wrong at that point, there's a good chance it'll be very wrong when the masks come off. The boss isn't just interviewing you; remember, you're interviewing the boss, too. It may feel weird, but a boss who is going to be good to work with will be all right with answering your questions. You can even check the boss's references! You've had previous employers he or she is likely to contact; why can't you contact previous employees?
- Assess the company's culture. It really helps to fit in with the company's culture. Consider what values or beliefs would be involved in your ideal company culture; dig in and see how close to your ideal the prospective company is.
- Assess the job itself. These are the questions you'd probably ask anyway: What is your measure of success? What do you expect from me? What happened to the previous person in this position? What will my top priorities be? And don't stop assessing once you're in the job. Your position may change as the company's goals shift. And if it changes drastically, you may no longer be suited for it, and either be laid off or tempted to quit. If you see red flags that this might happen, it's time to schedule your doctor's appointments, balance your budget, and chat with your network.
And now "Assess" no longer looks like a real word. Assess assess assess.