I see it over and over again – job seekers feeling confused and frustrated that they can’t find a job because they are only focusing on the money they will make. While pay and benefits are important, they are not the only factors to consider when searching for a job. You have to think about the sacrifices you will have to make, not to mention the workload and stress, that come along with high-paying jobs. If your values and lifestyle do not mesh or you are not willing to do the work that is necessary then you will need to re-focus on finding a position that will fit and the look to see how you can set goals for how you will get there.
I once talked to a young man who is 29 years old and had worked his way up to the manager of a major, large retail chain. He was preparing to interview for a district manager position and I have no doubt that he got the position. In realizing his success, this young man was very focused on his career path and had taken the steps necessary to get where he was. He reported that he had set career goals for himself at a very young age, 18, when he started working for the company and wanted to progress every two years; he would move into the “next step” and learn all he could so he was prepared for the next position. While income was important to this young man, he felt that the learning and self-development opportunities were invaluable and motivating, as well as the ability to develop his employees to also move into management positions.
I think a good lesson can be learned from this story. If you focus on your reasons for wanting to pursue your career path, aligning with your values, and setting clear goals for yourself can get you to the right job opportunity that can make you happy. It will give you the purpose and the passion to work hard. In time, the money will come!
I saw this article on the net and thought it was worthy to pass on. Some of you may be unsure about your future – perhaps you are looking for work or are unsatisfied with your current job and may be looking to either go back to school or change careers. Maybe these predictions of the top 20 growth occupations between now and 2018 will help you to make the “leap” (and give you hope for the future):
- Biomedical engineers – 72% increase, 11,600 jobs
- Network systems and data communication analysts – 53% increase, 155,800 jobs
- Home health aides – 50% increase, 460,900 jobs
- Personal and home care aides – 46% increase, 375,800 jobs
- Financial examiners – 41% increase, 11,100 jobs
- Medical scientists (except epidemiologists) – 40% increase, 44,200 jobs
- Physician assistants – 39% increase, 29,200 jobs
- Skin care specialists – 38% increase, $14,700 jobs
- Biochemists and biophysicists – 37% increase, 8,700 jobs
- Athletic trainers – 37% increase, 6,00 jobs
- Physical therapist aides – 36% increase, 16,700 jobs
- Dental hygienists – 36% increase, 62,900 jobs
- Veterinary technologists and technicians – 36% increase, 28,500 jobs
- Dental asssitants – 36% increase, 105,600 jobs
- Computer software engineers, applications – 34% increase, 175,100 jobs
- Medical assistants – 34% increase, 163,900 jobs
- Physical therapy assistants – 33% increase, 21,200 jobs
- Veterinarians – 33% increase, 19,700 jobs
- Self-enrichment education teachers – 32% increase, 81,300 jobs
- Compliance officers (except agriculture, construction, health & safety, and transportation) – 31%, 80,800 increase
If you are unsure about your career path, regardless if you are a recent entry to the job market, are returning to work, or have questions about career decisions, there may be reasons why. According to Callanan & Greenhaus (1990), there are seven sources that lead to career indecisions that result from either limited experience or knowledge and which they term “developmental indecision.” Here are the seven sources – see where you fall in:
- Lack of Self-Information – not knowing your talents, skills, abilities, values, etc.
- Lack of Internal Work Orgranization – not being aware of career opportunities that may be available in your current organization
- Lack of External Work Information – not having enough knowledge about opportunities that exist for your occupation, such as companies, industries, locations, pay, status
- Lack of Decision Making Self-Confidence – this involves an inability in your confidence or self-assuradness to make decisions
- Decision-Making Fear and Anxiety – this can involve fears or worries of making the wrong decision that can stall or prevent you from making a decision
- Nonwork Demands – you may feel conflicted to choose between your personal career desires and family needs or demands
- Situational Constraints – these are personal constraints that may result due to financial considerations, your age, schooling or years invested in your current career
The key to overcoming career indecision is to do your homework – analyze, assesss, research, and uncover the information you need to help you make a good decision. If you find that you are having difficulty, it would be beneficial for you to seek support, whether that is a friend, family member, or a career coach. I’d love your feedback if you’ve faced career indecisiveness and what you’ve done about it.