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Tandem Powered offers a full suite of Professional Resume Writing, Career Development, and HR / Business Consulting services.


Tandem Powered's blog is dedicated to empowering readers by highlighting best practices in the arena of resume writing, career development, and organizational effectiveness, as well as by providing readers with an insider's view of the corporate hiring process.

A Job That Pays The Bills

Kent Nolen

“I need a job that pays the bills. I’m not interested in being a superstar and my experience is kind of average. I’m worried that a lack of passion will make it hard for me to get hired.”

That sentiment, which a client recently shared with me (and agreed to let me use that portion of her email), may ring very close to home for you. Even though I work with a lot of clients who want to make positive steps toward professional fulfillment, not all of my clients some with the same motivation.

Here is my advice for individuals who “just want a job that pays the bills” and have “kind of average” experience.

Manage your expectations: Don’t say you want to be a contributor and then try to land a high-level leadership role (or something similar). Not only will it be super challenging to secure that kind of position, you are setting yourself up for failure because your pursuing a role that requires a level of passion and commitment that you are admittedly not interested in providing.

Stop self-assessing: When it comes to your background, “kind of average” is a fairly arbitrary assessment. I am constantly amazed at how often clients tell me that they have no accomplishments, only to find out that they just haven’t recognized their accomplishments. Additionally, I have plenty of clients who believe they’ve outlined all of their greatest accomplishments only to uncover several more during the process of developing their resume.

Change your mindset: Just because you are in it for the money does not mean you can’t find little ways to pursue professional fulfillment. I’m not saying you need to climb the corporate ladder – just that finding enjoyment in some aspects of your position, no matter how minor, can have a major impact on your attitude and sense of well being. Do this for you, not the company.

I talk a lot about career fulfillment, but that doesn’t mean I am blind to the fact that many people just need a job that allows them to get by or enables them to focus on non-professional fulfillment.