Because it’s way more than salary and titles.

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Image courtesy of Wharton.

If only work were more like love — with relationships, you can at least go on a couple dates before making a long-term commitment. But even if you’re the most thorough job seeker, it’s hard to tell how well you’re going to fit in when you choose one. Like a dear friend once observed to me: “It’s weird to get your dream job,” she said during a lunch where at least one of us was going through a career change, “and then realize it kind of sucks.”

Last week I visited the University of Pennsylvania on a reporting trip, and I brought this weirdness of the career quest to one Matthew Bidwell, an associate management professor at Wharton. He researches the sorts of things that should be taught to everyone before graduating college: how the choices you make about staying in a job or looking for new ones end up affecting your career trajectory, whether in the form of promotions or pay. …


Drake Baer

Senior writer at @thriveglobal covering the social and brain sciences. Formerly New York Mag, Business Insider, Fast Company.

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