If you’ve decided you’re ready to find a new job, one that fulfills your desire for purpose and meaning, a first step is understanding your innate strengths and personal priorities.  Once you’ve done that homework, it’s time to build a network of people who can help you get there.  Here’s how.

Identify people who have your dream job and make a connection, in person or online.  Reach out with an earnest request to learn about their work, its requirements and how they got there.  I’ve found that people are eager to share their personal success stories, so don’t be shy about asking.  If they say no or don’t respond, move on to someone else who can give you valuable insight.

This kind of one-on-one connection is extremely valuable.  It’s educational and it can morph into a kind of mentorship or sponsorship relationship that’s built on mutual trust and respect.