Honestly, no job is perfect. Once you get out into the real world, you’re forced to realize that even your dream job, if you’re lucky enough to nail it, isn’t without its flaws. You may even spend four years at a university studying a subject on which you totally have your heart invested a hundred times over, only to realize that when it comes to working in it day in and day out forever, it’s actually on par with what you imagine it feels like to have your eyes stabbed out by toothpicks.
While not everyone has the ability to quit their job and make a run for it ASAP, you do have the ability to make a run for it even before you sign a contract. Here are six signs that the job you’re interviewing for isn’t for you.
1. You really have zero interest in what the company does.
Although there are situations that can be so financially dire that you have to take a job anywhere, you at least want to work someplace where you’ll sometimes be interested in the work. For example, you don’t get a job at a vegan restaurant when you’re pretty sure you can’t live without veal and fois gras.
2. You get bad vibes even when you walk through the door.
When it comes to interviewing, instinct is your best friend. If you show up for your appointment and immediately feel like something isn’t right, then go with that gut feeling, especially if every person you walk past looks like they’re dying a slow and miserable death.
3. You can’t get through the interview without rolling your eyes.
In interviews there tends to be a lot of that “we’re looking for a team player,” or “we want someone who’s going to go above and beyond,” thrown around. Well, if the idea of being part of a team and being forced into weekend-long team building retreats (ah!), then you’re better off thanking them for your time and looking for something a little less people-involved.
4. You’re pretty sure your IQ dropped about 20 points halfway into the interview.
Sure, everyone needs to start at the bottom, but if the job responsibilities don’t seem like they’ll challenge you or you can already tell you won't be appreciated for just how fantastic you are, then nope. No good.
5. When you’re asked where you see yourself in 10 years and you say, “on a beach somewhere.”
True story: When interviewers ask you where you see yourself in the future, what they want to hear is, “Right here! At this company!” If you have dreams to write a novel or hit the lotto or marry someone so rich you never have to work again, it’s a definite sign that you’re just doing this until something better comes along. And if you can’t see that, the person doing the interviewing absolutely will.
6. It’s going to be job and not your career.
Will you be proud to tell people you’re working at this company? Will you be giving it 110 percent, because you believe in what they’re doing? Can you see yourself happy there for the long term? Will you be challenged every day all day long? If you can’t answer “yes,” to those questions, then bail. You didn’t get your degree in art history just to answer phones at a tech startup for the rest of your life.