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Finding the Right Fit

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Though it can be tempting to jump at the first job that’s offered to you, this may not be the best move if it is not a right fit.

If you find a place that is a good fit, that cherishes the values and skills you have, chances are you’ll be happier there. And if you’re happier, you’re probably going to do a much better job than you would otherwise. In fact, the research supports that those who are satisfied with their jobs are more likely to perform well at them (Judge et al., 2001).

But how do you decide if something is a “right fit” before you get there?

A simple script

Ian Altman shares a few simple questions you can ask to determine whether a company or particular role are a right fit for you during the interview process.

Start by asking have you had people in this role before? Chances are, you’re replacing someone. If your role is new, try asking if they’ve had anyone in roles that are at all similar to it.

Once you have this information, ask: 

What were some of their attributes that made them really good at it?

Followed by:

If you could change one or two things about the people who were in that role in the past, what would they be? 

They’ll explain some things they did and didn’t like and why, painting a picture of how they want that role to look.

This gives you the opportunity to do a little soul searching and determine if you can see yourself fitting into that painting. Not only can you use this information to decide if it is a right fit, but you can also use it to succeed in the role should you eventually fill it. They’ve already told you exactly what to do and what not to do.

If the people who came before you struggled with things that you are weak in, this may not be your best option. But if you have skills to meet those needs or if you share abilities the previous employees were also good at, you may really enjoy the role.

You don’t have to wait until you’re already in a company to know if it is the right fit for you. Follow these tips to determine if what you’re interviewing for is really your dream job!



Judge, T. A., Bono, J. E., Thoresen, C. J., & Patton, G. K. (2001). The job satisfaction-job performance relationship: A qualitative and quantitative review. Psychological Bulletin, 127(3), 376-407

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