Ask A Coach: What Are Ways I Can Find Purpose in My Work?

Paul Perez  '88

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What are ways I can find purpose in my work?

Notre Dame alumni and many other leaders I coach ask me this question. I understand. To do work that matters and gives us purpose is so human. As an executive coach, my role is to facilitate their self-understanding and breakthroughs.

Here are three questions to guide you toward identifying your purpose in your career:

What am I passionate about? Tip: these are areas where you are naturally drawn and that bring out your best.

Do my personal values align with my organization? With this alignment comes skill-building and a sense of fulfillment. Gallup’s research revealed that only 27% of employees strongly believe in their company's values, and less than half strongly agree that they know what their organization stands for and what makes it different. If you find yourself in this situation, taking stock of your values through self-reflection, online inventory or career coaching may help clarify.

Does my role play to my strengths? Knowing your strengths is vital but many of us don’t know what they are. One way to pinpoint yours is by taking one of the CliftonStrengths online assessments. I predict knowing your strengths will boost your confidence, provide clarity, and give you a competitive advantage

I’ll leave you with wise words from Richard Leider, a pioneer in the study of purpose and a fellow at Notre Dame’s Institute for Advanced Study.
“Our world is incomplete until each one of us discovers what moves us — our passion. No other person can hear our calling. We must listen and act on it ourselves.”
In the upcoming year, I encourage you to more fully live your purpose.


Paul Perez  '88, MS is an executive coach and also coaches in Notre Dame Alumni Association’s Career Coaching  Program

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