Ideal work environment – [Talent Profile]

What kind of job should I try to get?

What career path most closely aligns with me?

Where do I fit in?

When I was a kid, I really wanted to be a mad scientist. But couldn't find a college that offered that as a major.

When I was a kid, I really wanted to be a mad scientist. But couldn’t find a college that offered that as a major.

There are lots of systems on the internet that purport to give you suggestions for an ideal career. This information might be based on your interests (Holland Inventory / RIASEC) or personality in a specific context (the military’s ASVAB test) or on fantasy (MBTI). The truth is that your ideal career is shaped by a lot of somewhat independent variables.

Here are just some of the things relevant for you finding a good fit with your career:

  1. The match between your work style and the position
  2. The match between your career values (Schein model) and what the position offers
  3. The match between your preferred work environment (OCAI – ideal) and the culture of the workplace (OCAI – current)
  4. The match between your intelligence and the level of cogitation required by the job
  5. The match between your life circumstances and the job
  6. etc.

Actually, I could have just kept going with that list. A full psychological selection assessment takes several hours, involves filling in multiple questionnaires that look at different aspects of you and a qualified and trained psychologist trying to connect the dots between the position and you.

The Talent Profile report is only looking at two pieces of this very complex problem; your work style and your education level. If you want to go deeper, you will need to contact a qualified psychologist, hopefully one that uses good psychometric tests like those provided by (blatant commercial plug) Online Talent Manager. The Talent Profile is also drawing on correlated results from both career values and personality questionnaires and 12 years of research, this extra information narrows down the list of suggested positions shown in the report.

So while this section isn’t going to tell you everything you need to know to pick a career path, it will tell you something and what it does tell you will be as accurate as possible. The report also gives some general career choice guidelines, helpful, but you need to do some extra thinking here to connect this information with other jobs that might be appropriate for you.

That’s a lot of caveats just to say, “This list isn’t exhaustive, there are other jobs that might match your work style. This list is to give you some ideas to think about when choosing the next step of your career.”

Let’s see what the report actually says:

idealenvironmentIdeal work environment and relevant careers/jobs

Richard has a work style that will function best in specific work environments. When we analyze the scores, we come to the following conclusions:

Richard feels comfortable in organizations where management is rational and makes decisions based on data. He wants to work in an environment that values his knowledge, where being an expert is important and noticed. Richard wants to be in a position where thinking before acting is viewed as a good thing.

Richard fits best in an organization with a competitive and goal-oriented environment. He feels happiest in environments that are challenging and require a high level of performance from him. Situations that compensate him based on his level of performance are especially attractive to him.

Richard wants to work in an organization that encourages him to think about fundamental problems and ask big questions. He wants to have a say in the course of the organization, to set goals and influence policy.

Relevant positions and types of work

  • Functions that require independent work with a strong orientation on being productive and where achievement is important
  • Director/Leadership functions
  • Statistician
  • Researcher
  • Librarian
  • Database Administrator
  • Operational manager
  • Business leader
  • Project leader
  • Commercial manager
  • Functions on the tactical-strategic level
  • Political director
  • Troubleshooter in major reorganizations
  • Association director
  • Policy officer
  • Consultant

I’ve actually done several of these jobs, so I know what they are like. That’s the benefit of experience, I guess. I also have secret knowledge, I did take those other tests (career values and preferred organizational culture). So I know that being seen as a technical expert and autonomy are big draws for me and management is not.

I mean, I guess I knew that anyway, but I actually have that on paper from a verified psychometric instrument. It’s just more concrete and real when it’s on paper, you know?

So I can take a some of those jobs off the list because they involve managing people. I can manage people, but my work style doesn’t make me a warm fuzzy manager who engenders loyalty in his team. If I was leading a group of technical experts who were also not interested in emotions mixing into their professional life, that might work. Or, if I was a manager involved in short term projects where results were important and being able to mediate personal conflicts wasn’t important, I could do that.

SupermanI have highlighted the kinds of positions I have done in the past and enjoyed. I enjoy working as a programmer, but not so much as a programmer in a team of programmers. I like meeting directly with customers to get their needs and then putting on my red and blue tights and magically solving all of their problems with my brilliant solutions. And getting all the credit for doing so, can’t forget the fact that I want to get recognition for a job well done :)

But seriously, I like looking at problems from different perspectives and deep diving on complicated issues. I haven’t really looked at consultant positions seriously in the past, it’s something for me to think about.

I mentioned earlier that these suggestions are based on my work style and my education. I have a Bachelor’s degree, if I had a lower education level, the jobs would have been more directed toward that education level.

The Talent Profile is available on the website.