It's a good practice for no other reason than it makes one get into better practice when speaking. It's also good this time around because it is making me more formally evaluate what I really want.
In the past there seems to have been a progression in why I changed jobs: learning new skills (1996-1999), following a mentor (2000-2004), doing my own thing (2004-2005), and then just finding a job to keep the bills paid (2005-present). If I examine that progression (never thought of it that way before), what I see is that my choices in why I do things have gotten less and less - I've chosen less to advance a career than for my own personal reasons (and eating, I suppose, does constitute a personal reason).
One's own personal reasons are not bad things to be sure - but they can interfere with life if there's no master plan behind the choices - and more often than not, that is me.
So as I speak to these people I'm asking the question: what is it that I'm seeking in a position? More money? Sure, that'd be nice. Location? Yes, if it's convenient. But more often than not, I'm talking in terms of career advancement, of what I want to accomplish with and through any new position.
Jim Rohn, a very wise man, once said "The only way things are going to change for you is when you change". It's not the change of job or location or position I'm really seeking, I suppose: it's how I can and will change as I go to that position.