Having confidence in the workplace begins with having the type of job that fits your skills, talents and interests. If there is a mismatch between your personality and your job, you’ll most likely be unhappy and you’ll have additional stress in your life.
Determine Your Preference: Data, People or Things
According to the Dictionary of Occupational Titles printed by the U.S. government, skills are broken into three groups: data (information), people, and things. A secretary and accountant work with data. Engineers and computer repair people work with things. Teachers and salespeople deal with people. Although many jobs involve working with more than one or even all three, most careers are heavily slanted toward working with one type of skill.
Answer these questions:
- Which do you prefer working with – data, people, or things?
- Which area are you most interested in and would use your natural-born talents?
- Which one are you most enthusiastic about?
- In your ideal job, what percentage of time would you spend in each area?
- In your current job, what percentage of time do you now spend in each area?
- How do these two compare?
Determine Your Personal Needs
A different way to determine if your current workplace is the one for you is to consider whether it meets your personal needs:
- Do you prefer a workplace that has a friendly atmosphere where co-workers become close social friends, or do you like a more formal work environment that is only about the work and not about socializing?
- Do you prefer a job with clearly defined responsibilities, or would you rather have one that offers more flexibility and possibilities for creativity?
- Do you like a competitive environment that rewards those who excel, or do prefer being on a cooperative team that implements projects?
- Would you rather work in a high-energy, fast paced climate, or does a laid-back workplace work better for you?
Exercise: What to Do with This Information
Once you’ve thought deeply about these questions, you’ll be able to evaluate whether your career and workplace are a good fit. If you find that you’re not now in a job that’s compatible with your personality, you can stay with your current job but make some creative adjustments so that it is more compatible with your personality, such as switching certain job responsibilities with a co-worker. If that’s not feasible, it may be time to start making plans to leave your current job and find one that’s a better match.
Making sure your job and your personality match is one of the most important things you can do to be in harmony with your inner self, your co-workers and your supervisor. If you love your job because it’s a natural fit with your temperament, you’ll be more confident that you can learn the skills that are needed and that you can do an excellent job.