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Episode 30 - How to Job Search When You're Not Sure What to Search

In today’s episode, we’re going to talk about how to search for a job when you have no idea what to search for.


Find the Full Notes to this episode at


As a full time employee, your time is valuable. You don’t have time to waste applying for a bunch of jobs that you’re only semi interested in, hoping they’re better than where you’re at. 


That’s why it’s so important to take the time to explore and research positions that you would actually want to do and use your time to apply for those jobs.


However, how do you search for something when you have no idea what to search for?


It may sound like an impossible task but trust me when I say it’s easy. All you need to do is give yourself time and work backwards. 


As long as you have an idea in mind, you can use job sites, such as LinkedIn, to make specific searches to really drill down to find a career path that you’ll love.


Not sure how that works? Well listen in as I take you through the steps of how you can just search for a new career when you’re not sure what you want to do next. 


Make a List of keywords 

The first thing you’re going to want to do is to make a list of jobs, job responsibilities, interests, industries, company names and any other keywords that you can use to then search for jobs. 


Nowadays, most job sites allow you to be very specific in your job search, allowing you to search from almost anything you choose, such as company name, position, years of experience, salary, qualifications, education, and so much more.


You can even filter on jobs to ensure only jobs that meet your needs come up. For example, you can search for marketing and then salary over $100k to ensure only those types of jobs come up.


Now I do want to caution you here on filtering too much because you can leave a great job on the table (as I believe if you have the skills or desire, companies can be flexible on salary). 


In addition, the goal here is to explore. I have my MBA so when I filter on jobs with Master degrees, I get a lot of high level job openings, which is great.


However, if I take education out, so many more jobs come up that I can explore from so I can really see what is out there. 


Plus, maybe you might have to take a step back, but then you want to think about what the job is after that. I know I had a client that had to take a slight pay cut but was going to be making more than she made now in just 2 years (doing what she loved). 


So again at this time, keep an open mind and explore!


The site I love to use the most is LinkedIn as not only can you search for jobs, but you can see (sometimes) who the recruiter is, how many people applied, if you know of anyone who works there and so forth. 


So you can go from exploring right into an information interview with ease! And if you don't know what an informational interview is, go to to see my Ultimate Guide to Winning Information Interviews. 


Searching backwards like this will allow you to find positions that are more aligned with what you want, so you can apply with more confidence and this will allow you to be more successful in the role as you know it's going to be a good fit. 


All you need to have is an idea of a few keywords that fit the career you want to explore so you can use the search features to your advantage!


So how do you go about compiling this list of keywords?


There are a couple ways of going about this. 


Take the time to assess yourself

First, you want to take the time to assess yourself. What are the things you like to do? What are the skills you have that you want to utilize? What makes you feel successful?


Here you can also think about all the things you don’t want to do or that don’t interest you so you know if it comes up in a search, you know not to pursue it. 


I have a template that I offer when going through this exercise with more questions you can ask yourself. To learn more and to download that template, please go to


Take a career assessment

The next thing you can do to compile a list of keywords and learn more about what you want in a career is to take career assessments.


The assessments I love can be found at

. Go to to see all the links I will talk about in this episode. 


I like this site as the assessments are free. This site offers three assessments based on skills, interests, and personality. 


For each one, they give you your main career categories (such as finance, technology, etc.) that match your results along with career options. 


Note, they do allow you to filter on education and I suggest seeing the results from all levels (so you can really explore what is out there). 


There is also an evaluation section where you can see if any jobs check all 3 boxes. You do not have to take all three as they basically give you all of the same information, just in different ways. 


Remember, the goal is to make a list of keywords you can then use to search for jobs on LinkedIn that may interest you.


To caveat, the jobs are basic/old school (i.e. Teacher, Analyst, HR Manager, etc.), but it does give you a place to start exploring so you can narrow it down. 


Now I want to make a quick note that these assessments should be reviewed with a certified career professional as you need to know how to interpret them.


As I mentioned, the site is going to give you results that are basic and you need to look for what is behind that. 


It is not that you should be a cop or a teacher, it’s that you should be in a role where you care about people and want to teach. You can do that in a corporate setting or in a school setting. 


I know I get jobs such as an accountant or gov’t worker each time I do any assessment but the reason behind it is that I like the process/ making things efficient, and that can apply to any job. 


So although assessments can be extremely helpful, you need to be careful of how you analyze the results. AKA don’t take them word for word!


FYI, Here is another link where you can search careers with key words, browse careers by industry and take an assessment to help narrow it down for you (very quick to do).  That site is


Use Job Descriptions

You can also just browse job descriptions you like and make a list of the job responsibilities or other things that interest you.


Use Company Names

You may also have a list of companies that you want to work for. If you want to work at a big company in your city, look up “Headquarters in ‘city name’” and see what comes up. You can then go through those jobs and see what may be of interest to you. 

FYI doing it this way shows you want to work at a particular company vs find a meaningful role so just ensure you are also looking for a job you’d like vs just getting a job for your resume. You can do that but again my goal is to get you in a job you’ll love. 


Look at a complete list of careers and narrow it down

You can even search from the beginning and look at all jobs and pick which ones you’d want to explore. 


I will add two websites in the show notes that provide over 1000 job titles you can narrow down from. 



Search for roles or things that interest you

Now that you assessed yourself and compiled your list of interests, skills, industries and company names, you can use that to search for jobs. 


Quick note here is that you want to be more on the specific side. Say you may want a job that involves collaboration and complex problem solving. Searching for collaboration might not be the best way to search. So try complex problem solving first. 


See if you can even narrow it down more, such as adding a word like consulting, finance, marketing, etc. so you can really hone in on the jobs that may interest you. 


This whole episode is all a big plug and play/ exploration exercise so try different things and see what you can come up with/ works best for you.


In summary, there are just so many ways to search for a job. You just need to be willing to put in the work and take the time to explore. 


That’s all I have for todays episode. If you have any questions, I am happy to answer them all! 


Stay inspired and live powerfully, 


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