Most of us have or are currently facing the eternally dreaded and persistent question ― “Aage kya plan hai?”
This question has been stumping millennials and older generations alike. If you find yourself at the crossroads – starting your professional life, facing the possibility of a career change or something along similar lines, then Career Marshal might come to your aid.
In a perfect world, Sachin Tendulkar would still be plying his craftsmanship on the cricket pitch. But sadly, it is not true. So is the fact that not everyone finds their true calling in their childhood, if at all, and take career decisions accordingly. It sadly doesn’t work that way. On an average, a professional might have to change careers thrice in their lifetime. Instead of following what your parents did or doing what everyone says you should do, these tips from one of the top 10 job sites in the country might come in handy.
- Think about what makes you click.
This fact has been iterated time and again by our parents, popular fiction-verse and random strangers too sometimes. Best way to eliminate a job from your checklist is if it bores you to death!
Passion towards what you do is a common essential if not the most important in your decision to pursue a particular career line. Passion is what keeps you going even through the tough times. For thinking out loud ― is there a job that you will settle for less (or even free)?
Best way to find such path is by hit and trial – trying out all stuff until you find the ‘one job’.
- Balance the above with something you are reasonably good at.
What happens with most of us is that we may to face an ugly choice between what we excel at and what we want to actually pursue. On the interest of practicality, choose the former or the middle ground, if possible. For example – You might aspire to become a rocket scientist and you may be the most eloquent orator. The middle ground, you ask? A teacher at a university pursuing PhD. Focus on the skills you have best and your personality.
- Apply for some tests
A complexity that arises after the first two points is that what if you don’t know where your passion lies as well as what you’re good at? That is where Career assessment tests in college or schools come into the picture. Myers-briggs test is a good start. Test from Rasmussen College matches your self-reported skills and interests with potential jobs. For potential programmers, Switch recommends a coding career based on your preferences. About.com’s Job Search site has a collection of other career tests.
- Try an Internship
More and more students with no prior experience are testing out their skills through internships. They are like regular jobs, though only for a small period of time. You can test out a particular industry – whether you see yourself being employed there.
At its best, it can land you your dream job in a company along with a full time contact and a hefty pay. At its worst , you may find the industry not to your liking, but you still end up building a network for yourself that may help you with future professional career paths.
- Find a Mentor
Finding a person in the upper echelons of the company that you wish to work for can be a big blessing. A Mentor can be anyone ― your relative, neighbour, friend or a complete stranger. They can provide you with insider insight and can elevate your career to the next level. So be in touch with someone like that through polite emails conveying your wish to shadow them and see what is it like. Sites like LinkedIn are a good way of finding someone like that. Word of caution : Always maintain a respectable distance and don’t harass them with incessant calls or emails. If they refuse, be a sport about it and move on.
- Take the road less taken
We all know the popular careers available to us—doctor, lawyer, teacher, computer engineer, police officer, store owner, etc. If you feel that none of them seem to kindle the fire inside you, then you may want to look at some unconventional career profiles that are just a click away on the internet. Even the government keeps track of them and you might hit gold on some government portal. Even if you don’t find anything you want to ply your trade in, you just might have a good laugh over it.
- Ask around
You have to ask around with people about their jobs (assuming that people you come in contact with are not in homogenous fields).
Also, don’t forget your local library’s reference librarian can point you to career resources. Make it a point to keep mining for information on your LinkedIn profile for potential contacts and opportunities.
- Consider your gifts, passions and values
We, at career marshal, place importance on holistic development for someone seeking jobs.The perfect career for you would most likely fit the G+P+V formula, which stands for Gifts + Passions + Values. Consider your strengths and passions, as we’ve noted above, and your values — where will you draw the line in terms of seeking employment and ultimately, money?
- Chart out a career plan
Having some achievable milestones to follow in your career journey gives you an inkling of what path to tread on and what path to avoid to be as close to the set milestone as possible. Let us assume you want to be the CEO of a unicorn start-up. The first milestone would be coming up with a million dollar idea, literally.
Potential milestones thereafter is conducting research about the market demands and assembling a team of trustworthy professionals and so on. What if you see it going nowhere and want to switch to a coding based job? Hence setting concrete framework to follow is crucial.
Obviously, the most carefully laid out plans may not survive the real world. So, just trust your instincts and give it your all!