The process of identifying a job and a company that best suits your passions and desires can often feel overwhelming … but it doesn’t need to. All you need to do is put the “CLAMPS” on and you’ll quickly find aligning your

dream career and your dream company actually becomes quite


What do I mean by CLAMPS? Well, CLAMPS is an acronym for Challenge, Lifestyle, Advancement, Money, Prestige and Stability.

Let’s take a closer look … 

Challenge … is the learning, support and training provided by a company. You’re going to want this is you desire to grow within the organization.

Lifestyle is, quite simply, the number of hours you’ll be expected to work each week, as well as what hours you’ll be working – 9-to-5, early shift, late shift, things like that. Your hours have a direct impact on your lifestyle so you need to take this into consideration.

Advancement is how quickly you can realistically expect to earn promotions and take on new challenges; essentially, how soon you can begin moving up the ladder.

Money … do I need to explain that? Probably so. Keep in mind, if money is most important to you, you may not be enhancing your profession because you’re chasing the financial reward vs. growing as a professional and making a meaningful contribution. Money is, obviously, very important but, ultimately, your love of your job is what will drive your success.

It’s generally better to make less and be happy, than make more and regret your career choice or company choice.

P” stands for prestige of your desired position, company and industry. Figure out how important this is to you but be aware prestige is purely an ego matter and based more on emotion than benefit. You can prosper and grow within any organization, no matter how obscure it might be.

And finally, stability. The stability of the organization and the industry. Is the company growing? Is it financially stable? Is it in a growth industry that will continue to provide opportunities for advancement? These are important questions.

We recommend you sit down with pad and pen and do what we call “rank and rate”. Be honest with yourself. Which of these six considerations are most important to you? Which ones are non-negotiable in your mind? Once you’ve done this, rank them in order of importance and pretty soon you’ll have identified how a particular profession and company aligns with your desires.

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