How to move forward when you’re not happy with your job

Regularly I have clients who don’t go to work with the same positive energy as they used to.
Often, they still like the company they work for and the colleagues they work with, but feel something is missing.

Maybe you recognise this as well?

Then it could be time to evaluate your current professional situation. And a great way to do that is on the basis of your personal values.

Personal values as your guideposts

Values represent what’s important to you in your life. Values are not about who we would like to be, nor who we think we should be. And when it comes to values there is no right or wrong.

Career coaching women

Values can be seen as guideposts that show you how to stay true to your unique self. By building a life around your values you can create a life that is satisfying and meaningful to you.

In relation to your career a clear understanding of your personal values makes it easier to work out what you would like to find in a job and how to set the adequate career goals.

How to clarify them

It’s not easy to find out what your most important values are. The answer to this direct question is often a set of values influenced by for example family, upbringing and peers. Like respect, autonomy and fairness[1].

Your personal values are often more hidden.

Therefore, plan some time for yourself and ask help (from a friend, colleague or coach) to clarify what your personal values are. You could ask yourself questions like:

  • Which 3 people inspire me and why?
  • What drives me crazy?
  • What are 5 things I enjoy doing?

Based on the answers make a long list of all the values that came up.

Important to note is that something you can own or do is not a value.
So, for example travelling is not a value. Keep digging and ask yourself:

-> What does X give me?
-> What is truly important to me about X?

You’ll find out that, for example, traveling gives you adventure or variety.

What would you like more of?

From the long list, pick the 6 most important personal values and relate them to your job.

Is there enough space for my creativity? How am I honoring my value of connection as an analyst? How do I contribute to the growth of others?

This analysis gives you insight into what you’re missing in your current job and what you would like to have more of.

Next step in your career

This is a great basis to move forward. You can explore, for example with your manager, how the organisation can support you with your desired changes.

Can you pick up other tasks in your current role? Would another department be more suitable? Would a job swap be possible? Etc.

Based on the outcomes you can decide upon your next step.

Career coaching women

Whether it is in the same organisation or not, if you stay close to your personal values, you’ll find that positive flow. You make decisions around your career more easily, you take on new challenges and your work fulfills you again.

Have fun!

PS1: Curious how coaching could help you to move forward in your career?
She does it offers every woman a free coaching session of one hour, so you can experience what coaching is. Of course, this conversation is both entirely without obligation and confidential. 

PS2: In this article you can read more about the theme of values and career.


[1] Yates, J. 2019. The Career Coaching Toolkit. Routledge: London and New York.

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *