I have, for a while, been keeping an eye on Knowledge Management and Organizational Learning positions advertised on the job market. I do this for all of the obvious reasons one would keep an eye on the job market even when fully employed. I may even have blogged about it in the past.
There is one aspect of this ongoing process that I have struggled with. As a seasoned professional, I should know better than to entertain ideas about dream jobs. I've seen glimpses of dream KM jobs in a handful of position descriptions in the past few years. I have now learned to recognize the unhealthy thinking patterns that necessarily follow the "ahah" moment of coming upon a dream job description and I'm better able to handle them. All I have to do is remind myself that the dream job description is an illusion.
Until you are in the position and you have experienced the work environment for a while, you can't possibly know that it's going to be your dream job. The good news is that if and when I have to be on the job market, based on my habit of keeping an eye on job descriptions, I have a good sense of the possibilities and I (hopefully) wouldn't feel compelled to apply everywhere and accept the first job offer. I feel better knowing that these potential dream job positions exist, I have the qualifications for them, and I am better prepared to apply for them if the need arises.
Dream jobs contemplation is best left to new graduates. This doesn't preclude me from continuously revising, tweaking, and updating my aspirations and looking forward with great optimism. Next time I come across a "dream job" description, I'll will smile and move on.
Here's the "dream job" that triggered this post: Knowledge Management and Organizational Learning Specialist. In the end, it made me realize that I needed to update my idea of a dream job and focus on more specific aspirations that I can realize within the context of my current occupation (or in parallel with it).