Choosing a career path can be very exciting and also overwhelming at the same time. Some people already know what they are born to do and the career path they fit in. The majority tries to fit in whatever career options are available. Whether you are a graduate, choosing a career path is very important to succeed in the professional world.
Nowadays, people are more likely to frequently change careers over their professional life. For example, you may study biochemistry at the university but find yourself working in a bank.
Staying for a long time in a career has its advantage. It would enable you to become an expert in your career field and enjoy more career opportunities. It is worth of note that you should not stick to a particular career when it may not benefit you financially.
Consider These Factors When Choosing a Career
1. Job Availability
When choosing a job or career path, you should research and stay informed on in-demand job roles. And jobs that could potentially replace you in the long term due to the advancements in technology. It can be exhausting to get jobs that have a limited life span and would not grant you any job satisfaction. Though, the job market continues to displace more workers for machines and tech, there are still jobs for skilled workers. Research job openings in your desired career field before making your decisions.
2. Interest and passion
Some questions to ask when planning on choosing a career path are; what do I enjoy doing? What job can I do and be happy even without getting paid? What are my interests?
A lot of people are not happy with their careers and jobs. Hence, it is important to identify your interest and passion and align them with your career. Only then would you achieve your job satisfaction.
3. Your Soft Skills
When you go for an interview, many employers may ask what your skills are. These are the intangible skills that define your personal brand like empathy, time efficiency, people management skills, and team player. These soft skills will help you secure a job and grow throughout your career. If you are also skilled in handling people of different age groups, you may do well in the healthcare sector or education. Indentify your skills and plan your career path accordingly.
4. Talent and strength
Your talents are those actions that come naturally to you but not to most people. It will help you to succeed if you are in a field that needs your talent. Everyone has one or two talents and it is vital you understand what yours are before choosing your career path. Your strengths can also be termed as your skills and good skills enhance your career path.
5. Level of education
Your level or degree of education could play an important role in advancing your career path. Even if you got employed without a degree, you may still need to get more education to improve your competitive advantage. Some jobs require you to obtain some form of degree while others may just need you to learn on the job with training. Either way, you need some forms of higher education to advance.
6. Attitude to work
People react differently in the same work environment. Your attitude to work is crucial when choosing a career path. If you have a positive approach to work and can work in a stressful environment, you can opt for a more challenging and fulfilling career. If you cannot cope with stress, maybe due to your family or personality, it is better to choose a career path that is less stressful yet fulfilling to you.
7. Salary structure
This should not be the center of your decision in choosing a career path. But it is also important when you consider the amount of money you spend to obtain your degree in the university. You can research on the salary structure in your desired career to have an idea. If student loans funded your education, you need a well-paying job to pay back your loan.
8. Job experience
Your relevant job experience can help to get your dream job in your desired career. Many big companies and organizations tend to employ individuals with some level of experience. You can acquire experience in your desired career by volunteering, undergoing internships, or participating in some other jobs which might not pay you for your services but at the end of the day, you are able to get the level of experience which is required for you to get your dream job.
9. Course availability
Since all institutions may not offer the same course or teach in the same way, you have to confirm if your desired career is taught in your preferred institution. Most times, people have to change their preferred careers due to unavailability of courses in the accepted institution of study. It becomes paramount to check for such courses or for other related courses before applying to any institution.
10. Course relevance
A lot of careers and jobs are becoming less important and being replaced by new technologies. Hence, when choosing your career, you have to consider course relevance in the job market. Example is the ATM machines replacing some bank jobs, and manufacturing machines replacing some factory jobs. A relevant career today might become obsolete tomorrow. So do well to choose a career with long-term relevance.
11. Your personality
This plays a very vital role in who you are. Your personality tells people about how you think, feel, or act. When choosing a career path, consider your personality.
12. Market availability
You want to choose a career path that is favorable in the job market. Are there more job openings and is it for the long term? Learn all you need to know about your career path in the job market.
13. Your lifestyle in relation to your career
Change is constant. You are likely to change as your progress through life and gain new perspectives. Your lifestyle may also be affected when making these decisions. When choosing a career, it is important you choose a career that you would enjoy as you grow older. For example, if you don’t like to work out and follow a strict diet plan, you may not find jobs that require you to stay fit a good choice. Your career path should impact your lifestyle. Both must always align to give you a fulfilling life.
14. Achieving your long term goals
It is important to align your dreams and aspirations with your career. We all have dreams and long term goals. it may be job satisfaction, financial freedom, or fame. Your career paths should fit into your goals and dreams. Generally, your job should give you the satisfaction you need. It is not all about the monetary value but for you to do your job and be happy with yourself as well.
15. Availability of funds
You need to check your financial status when opting for a course to study. Except you are being funded through a scholarship or other forms of grants, it would not be wise to choose a course that would create holes in your pockets. For example, if you want to study medicine, you are required to purchase a lot of textbooks and materials. These medical books are quite expensive. If you cannot afford the expense of medical school, you may struggle to get through. Alternatively you can choose a less expensive course in the medical field like biochemistry or microbiology.
You don’t have to switch your career, especially if you find it fulfilling and getting job satisfaction. Staying for a long time in one career path has its advantage. You tend to become an expert in your chosen field. It also allows you to grow and become more successful.