An excellent new resource for people looking for alternatives to the traditional concepts of work and careers.

The Hire Me My Way campaign is led by Timewise, a multi-award winning social business. Their founding vision is that ‘everyone should be able to find the flexibility they need in their job, without losing their value in the workplace.’

Led by founders Karen Mattison MBE and Emma Stewart MBE, Timewise is working to build a healthy flexible jobs market by:

The Hire Me My Way campaign is their latest venture and they hope it will have a far-reaching effect, and transform the flexible jobs market.

Big Lottery Fund logo

The Big Lottery Fund supports the Hire Me My Way campaign to achieve the positive social impact that comes from part-time and flexible jobs being readily available. Having flexible working available at the point of hire helps parents and carers, people with disabilities, older workers, people with health issues, and many other groups.

 

 

 

 

 

 

* Only 8.7% of jobs paid £20,000 or more (full time equivalent) are advertised with part-time or flexible options.

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I am delighted to introduce a guest blog today from Lizzie Penny, Co-founder and Joint CEO of The Hoxby Collective . Lizzie breaks down the 3 steps you need to take to land a job you absolutely love in 2016.

Finding a job that puts a spring in your step changes work from being a burden to a defining characteristic – something that energises and inspires you. While I love what I do, a huge 60% of UK workers are not happy in their jobs. Most of us spend more time with our colleagues or in our workplace than we do with friends, partners or children, so why are so many of us prepared to settle? At a time when we are living longer and working longer, we should look at our careers as a long game. We shouldn’t be afraid to keep looking and trying new tactics until we find the perfect fit for us.

Yes, jobs are about salary, responsibility, and title, but also fulfilment and the opportunity to learn.

We want to achieve balance in our personal lives and work for a leader we admire. There’s much more to work than just the money; once we find a job that pays enough for us to live the life we want, then we all inevitably start looking for more from our careers.

So how do you find the perfect job? There are three steps:

  1. Understand your purpose

Ten years ago I was doing the marketing for Pimm’s; a job I was really interested in, on a brand I was passionate about, with responsibilities that stretched and rewarded me in equal measure. I had both the freedom to try new things and the support to make sure I was always learning, not to mention being surrounded by a fantastic group of colleagues, many of whom I now count among my closest friends. And yet something wasn’t quite right. On paper it was the perfect job for me but when I was in it, I didn’t love it. I didn’t feel that I was put on this planet to sell booze (though I’m a big fan), so I took some time to reflect, and left the stability of my FTSE100 employer and went off to start my own business. Nobody can find a job they love without first understanding what their definition of ‘success’ is. For me, it meant making my mark in some way, and driving social change while having the freedom to do my own thing, in spite of the risks that came with it. I had always seen myself as a big business kind of girl, but actually I get more satisfaction from having social influence and control over my own time, rather than simply progressing up a predetermined hierarchy. I wanted my work to have meaning for me personally, to feel deeply connected to the cause. At my company, we believe that many people have transferable skills, and that having a heartfelt passion for something can often be more valuable than experience in that particular sector.

Everyone is different, every job is different, and understanding yourself and exactly what you are looking for is the first step towards happiness. Perhaps start by thinking about the things that fascinate you and that you love learning about in your spare time. Consider the jobs that exist in that sector – how can you take your experience and apply it there? It may allow you to find something that connects with your purpose, and makes you feel fundamentally fulfilled. Also, think about the people you admire: what is it about what they do and the values they have that has earned your respect? Can you find a way to connect those values to the work you do?

As soon as you discover that personal connection, work stops being a job. It becomes a source of inspiration and you find that you are able to inspire those around you. Ultimately, it’s about our time and how we choose to spend it. Thinking deeply about how we want to be spending that time is crucial to finding something we love.

You know you’ve found it when: people ask you ‘how’s your job going?’ in the pub on New Year’s Eve and you give them a longer answer than just ‘fine thanks’.

  1. Consider your life outside work

We are all unique individuals. We have hobbies, passions, families and preferences. Being able to fit our careers around these, and work in our own ‘workstyle’ is something we fight for across the board at The Hoxby Collective, the company I co-founded. With the prevalence of Wi-Fi and the portability of laptops, many of us can now truly choose when and where we work, provided we find the right employer or working structure to facilitate it. My workstyle is four days a week, 8am-3pm and then two evenings, which means I can spend the rest of my time with my two-year-old son. Working these hours doesn’t compromise how good I am at my job. In fact it does the opposite – when I’m at work, I think I’m better at it. If you do a job you love and it balances with the aspects of your life outside work, then your head is more in the game when you’re working. You’re motivated and happy in the knowledge that you still have time to pursue your interests outside of work; go to that Christmas lunch with your friends, or have a lie-in after that big night out. Pursuing true work-happiness means finding a company, role or work setup with a culture that believes in this, and can match the flexibility that is important to you personally. Of course, your priorities and life factors change over time so finding a role that perfectly compliments your life will need to be reviewed from time to time to make sure it still fits.

You know you’ve found it when: sometimes you get the Sunday evening buzz rather than the Sunday evening blues.

  1. Search for true love

Applying for jobs is like dating. Once you’ve discovered what you’re looking for in your perfect role, you then need to read a few profiles and meet a few prospective matches to find the one. And when you find it, somehow it just feels right. You heart beats a little faster and you know that it’s the one that could change everything for the better. I love my job, and I find it hard to believe I would ever want to do anything else. I used to say I was very lucky to work on something I am so passionate about and connected to every day, but in all honesty I think we make our own luck. If you can take the time for some self-reflection and then make that dream a reality, then truly loving your job can be the reward. Steve Jobs summed it up perfectly saying, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it”.

If you treat looking for a job like looking for a partner, and don’t settle until you’ve found true love, then life promises to be much sweeter.

You know you’ve found it when: your job brings out the best in you. You’re fascinated, stretched, fulfilled and, above all else, you’re happy.

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Lizzie Penny is Co-Founder & Managing Director at The Hoxby Collective and marketing agency Futureproof and loving mother to her mischievous two-year-old son.

Learn more about The Hoxby Collective and joining the #workstyle community here: http://hoxbycollective.com/

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Australia discovers portfolio careers!

2 May 2016

Well not exactly, as we know from much correspondance that the concept is alive and well ‘down under’. However, I was interested to read a recent article in The Australian Business Review in which the author seems to have adopted a US expression to describe the phenomenon – slash careers. Marci Alboher wrote a book […]

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So do you miss the training that your old employer used to give you?

15 April 2016

Not much is the usual answer I get from portfolio workers. Training unbelievably appears to be one of the first things cut in hard times. And politicians and commentators wonder why our productivity is relatively low compared with many other countries. I don’t have hard data from the UK but recent research from the US […]

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Portfolio Careers and Dads

8 April 2016

We have always known that in theory a portfolio career can also pave the way for a portfolio lifestyle. I tend to come across more women with portfolio careers than men but then it is very difficult to find any real stats on this. However, a fascinating new report, Working Futures, published by the UK […]

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Are you part of the “gig” economy?

6 March 2016

Yes -another new piece of jargon although it is difficult to get an agreed definition of this yet. It seems to be a catch-all term for anything from Uber taxi drivers to freelance professionals. Cath Everett has writtem a fascinating account of this in an article in Personnel Today. Even US presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton – […]

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Whatever happened to career paths?

5 March 2016

I was asked this quesion recently when being interviewed on radio about portfolio careers. Good question! In the latter part of the last century people including careers advisors were still using this term. And of course career paths still exist, especially in long established careers like medicine, law and accountancy. But even with these I […]

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Networking

13 January 2016

Networking – the joy and the bain for a portfolio worker. I would argue that this a life skill not just for all portfolio workers but for all paid and non-paid workers and on my high horse would claim that whover you are you need to  know how to do this. If you can the […]

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Oli Barrett says “don’t ask ‘ what do you do?’. Do ask ‘what are you up to at the moment?’

16 November 2015

One of the people that Katie and I interviewed for our book was Oli Barrett, who, even in 2009, was already described as the founder of speednetworking in the UK. If you have ever speed dated ( I have not!) you will know what I mean. I suddenly came across a piece of advice he […]

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6 Ways Work Will Change

2 November 2015

This is the title of a blog piece for Fast Company magazine that is well worth reading. Why? Because ever since we wrote our book it has become increasingly obvious that portfolio careers is increasingly a first choice for people of all generations. The baby boomers are especially jumping on to this way of working […]

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