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Unstoppable drive

20 February 2015
by: Jasper Roosdorp

Give me work that suits me. That way I never have to work again. I dream of a job I don’t want to stop doing. It is because I have an unstoppable drive. And employers? They dream of employees that feel just like that. But to feel that way as an employee you need focus and a vision. If you know what you want employers will want to hire you.

In the ideal CV you’ll notice a year’s long path towards a certain goal. It is a testimony to motivation. And that, work ethic, is the most sought after soft skill in job applicants. Caroline Froeling of the Talent & Career Center makes the importance of focus very clear in the workshops she leads at NEXT. Don’t try to be an all-rounder. Don’t become a generalist. Your motivation, talents and work ethics are only credible when you have a focus. And to have a focus, you’ll need to have a vision.

I used to look at job vacancies as grocery lists: as a summary of qualities demanded by an employer. I was wrong. Most job vacancies only include a couple of strict demands. Most of it is filler. Don’t focus on those points. Keep room in your motivational letter and CV to talk about your vision.


Maybe most students hate job-hunting because they feel they need to pretend being the embodiment of the vacancy’s wish list. You know, the feeling that you need to touch upon every single demand in your motivational letter and CV. While in reality you really should be focusing on getting across who you are instead. And you can do so. That is exactly what the best applicants do. They know themselves. They know what they’ve got to offer.

The most successful candidates recognize what a vacancy is truly about. If they match the requirements they get going. They’ll describe not only why they’re the best candidates but also dare to emphasize those qualities that best match them. They are the ones who know exactly where they want to go.

Simon Sinek knows how to summarize that key to success in just the right way. “People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it.” His analyses of successful companies made clear having a vision truly would make you big. Be honest to yourself. Why do you do the things you do? Do you make certain work and study related choices because they’re easy to make? Or do you make them because of a vision or maybe an ideal? And which words do you write down when you apply for a job?

Last modified:17 February 2017 11.08 a.m.
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