What’s important to you?

Photo by Mike Tinnion on Unsplash

When Chris knocked back a lucrative job offer, his boss was staggered. He thought it would have ticked all the boxes; expanded accountability, opportunities for business growth, personal challenge, to name a few. But he had not understood that it would impinge on Chris’ commitment to integrate work with his young family.

Chris knew that he would have to be available around the clock to respond to emails, join global conference calls in diverse time zones, as well as work on weekends. Not having enough time with his kids was a price he was not prepared to pay.

Chris realised that he had spent much of his career trying to do what others expected of him and that he no longer had anything to prove. He had a calm confidence that he would find another opportunity as long as he continued to stand for his value.

Prior to the job offer, Chris had written a list of the ingredients in his dream role. Without the list, he would have been pulled in all directions. But, when he evaluated the job offer against his threshold commitment to integrate work and family he was clear that the answer was no. Chris has a new future in front of him having backed himself and his value. 

You may find that it is easy to say what you do notwant in a job, but it takes some thought to come up with a list of what you dowant. Make it independent of job title, company or industry. List all the factors that will give you satisfaction and fulfilment in your job. 

Like Chris, there may be a single criterion that outweighs all the rest. Greg McKeown in his book, Essentialism, calls this the 90% rule. He suggests that we can usefully apply extreme criteria to make decisions. He says, “As you evaluate an option, think about the single most important criterion for that decision, and then simply give the option a score between 0 and 100. If you rate it any lower than 90 per cent, then automatically change the rating to 0 and simply reject it.”

What’s important to you?

Best regards, Brian

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