11:02 PMWhy Making Career Choices is The Right Path
We've organized it according to the three basic principles of good decision making:
1. Know yourself–your strengths, values, personality, and skills
This will help you decide which choice best fits you.
Where do you like to work?
What’s your preferred work location? Your preference could vary from a small regional office to corporate headquarters to a home office, an airport hotel in Buffalo or a beach suite in South Florida. How often do like to work away from home? Do you mind traveling for your job? If living out of a suitcase makes you cringe and you need a consistency in your workplace, avoid careers that require a lot of moving around.
Do you enjoy social interaction?
Do you like working with others or as part of a team? Are you motivated by the needs of others and your ability to provide a solution? This is critical because some people shy away from that connection and would rather deliver value behind the scenes—without the complications of interacting with colleagues and clients. Know your social needs so you can choose a career that matches them.
How important to you is work-life balance?
Do you value a short commute and a home-cooked meal every night? Do you live for weekends out at the soccer field watching your kids play? If you need those creature comforts on a regular basis, pick a career that will give you the time to enjoy them. Look for jobs with regular hours and little to no requirements to work overtime or on weekends.
Are you looking to give back?
Some careers have a component of giving back, where the beneficiary of your hard work is not a corporation’s bottom line but rather a sick child, an endangered species or the planet’s air quality. If it’s important to know that your hard work makes a difference in the world, this could be a significant driver in your career choice.
How much money do you want to make?
As you look forward in life, what are your expectations for money? You might be single now, but maybe you hope to become your future family’s breadwinner. Or maybe you’re part of a successful two-income family and need to decide whether you’re comfortable living on less or compromising on other career aspects, like work-life balance, to earn a better income. If money is the reward you seek, there are careers to match.
If choosing a career feels like too much pressure, here’s another option: Pick a path that feels right today by making the best decision you can, and know that you can change your mind in the future. In today’s workplace, choosing a career doesn’t necessarily mean you have to stick with that line of work for your entire life. Make a smart decision, and plan to re-evaluate down the line based on your long-term objectives.
Recognize that you’ll change as time rolls on. Your needs for money, freedom, balance, and recognition will change with you. But for now, think through each of these ideas, and you’ll be well on your way to choosing a career that’s best for you.
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