My perfect job would need to involve work that really adds value to a company and that makes a positive difference in the lives of the employees, or the company's customers, or both.
My delight in working with company subject matter experts and customers would be satisfied by the up front work to create requirements documents that clearly outline the problem to be solved and the system architecture to deliver a solution. Hopefully the solution would take advantage of my strengths in database architecture and in programming languages. If the answer also involves mathematics, text parsing, networking protocols, or Web site construction , so much the better!
If the company and it's customers agree that a proof of concept phase would be in order, this would bring me much delight. I've done this before and this work always brings me challenge and satisfaction alike.
Once all the stakeholders agree to move forward, the execution of the development, test, qa, and production phases, in concert with close customer involvement, would of course bring much satisfaction to all involved.
The "jewel in the crown" in this case would be a happy customer, a happy manager, and a programmer that is stopped in the hallway of this company months or years later by a co-worker that says "Glen, I really enjoyed working with you on that project we did together."