Many people regret having taken a particular job because they didn't realize what the organization, boss, or job was really like.
The savvy job seeker vets the job and employer in all these ways:
1. Ask colleagues for recommended employers or work groups within an organization. Describe the sort of environment you work best in: fast-paced, high-level, quiet, relaxed with emphasis on work-life balance, techie, etc.
2. Read between the lines of advertised jobs. Ads that, for example, ask
that the candidate be "high-energy and self-motivated" gives you a
3. Check out a company on Glassdoor.com. It offers reviews of companies.
Like all such reviews they're overweighted by shills and the
disgruntled but if there are a number of reviews, the noise tends to
4. During the interviews, ask questions to tease out info on the job, the boss, the coworkers, and workplace
culture. For example, "What would you expect I'd accomplish in the
first 30 days?" or "Every boss is different. In what way are you
different from other bosses?"
5. After being offered the job but before accepting it, ask if you can
visit your workplace both to negotiate terms and get a feel for the
place. Hang out in the break room and ask employees questions like,
"I've been offered a job here but haven't accepted yet. Is there
anything you feel I should know that might not appear in the employee
handbook?" Of course, you won't always get revealing answers but it
can't hurt to ask.
Vetting an employer that way puts the odds of your being happy in
your new job in your favor. The other component is you: your skills and
your attitude. Also do a good job in those departments, and I'm betting
all will be well.