WHAT CAREER PATH SHOULD I CHOOSE?
The step-by-step guide
When you start thinking about your future and choosing your career path, your heart beat may increase and your brow may sweat, but never fear; the complete guide is here!
No need for settling, no need for dreading work; here are some of the best ways to make sure you choose your career wisely.
What are you passionate about? Explore those fields.
What are some of your hobbies?
What do you like doing?
Once you have a better idea of that, start exploring the different job opportunities within the parameters of what you like, or possibly what you are good at.
You don’t have to only explore your likes, or interests, but understanding this provides you with a good starting point. Also, don’t compare yourself to others, choose a path that YOU would enjoy and perform the best in.
No matter if you are analytical, practical, creative or technical, you may even be a socialite; there will definitely be a range of career paths that will suit you.
Now that you have jotted down your skills – Use them.
By now you should have written down your skills, qualifications, like, dislikes and experience. With this information you can further refine your potential role research, and have them actually play to your strength.
Bare in mind, no matter how well you excel within different skills, hard work will always pay off and there is always more to learn, but those skills you possess will make it easier to find an achievable job prospect.
This also means that your strengths will be recognised and used to their maximum potential. You don’t want to be stuck in a career that doesn’t use the skills you have developed.
You may not enter the perfect job straight away, but you can always plan it out.
Once you have made your decision, think about the steps you may have to take to work your way into your dream position in the career path of your choice. If you are a people’s person, and have great sales and customer service skills, your chances of becoming the Sales Director is greater, especially if you are willing to start from the bottom and learn all the tricks of the trade.
Also ask yourself: is what I’m study going to bring me closer to my dream? Is the experience I’m gaining beneficial? If not, consider changing your game plan.
Remember, if you feel stagnated in your current job, there are courses you can take, volunteering groups and further educational training. These steps also help you better understand your value, and it makes you more employable.
Also, remember that a field of work is far more than a single job. Fields are broad; try looking for 5 jobs within that field
Experience is key.
So, the well-known double edged sword of, how do I gain experience, if I need experience beforehand?
People seem to forget about work experience and internship opportunities, and this is a good place to start. Within these, you will be able to use the skills you have in a practical fashion, in a work environment. You will also gain more skills while doing so. If you work hard, it may turn into a permanent position and you may leverage key connections within the industry. Networking is very important.
Learn as much as you can about the qualifications needed to enter this field.
Even if the position doesn’t work out, you have still learnt something, and knowledge is invaluable. You’ll also have a better idea of what you truly want to do.
Here is a list of current internships in SA.
Always research what the career actually entails.
Remember, nothing is what it seems, until you’ve dug a little deeper.
Speak to people in the industry, try and get an idea of what their day to day tasks are, and what sort of lifestyle they lead.
Lifestyle is extremely important. A high status roll like a doctor or a lawyer may seem great, but they aren’t for everyone.
Dedication is key to any career, so make sure you can commit to your chosen career path.
Expectations, don’t make them too high.
Be realistic when setting goals and looking for your future career path. As much as we all want to follow our childhood dreams, if they aren’t attainable, your career may not go anywhere.
Go into every career with an open mind. Expectations can trump the reality of the job and you may not enjoy it as much as you thought because you set them too high.
For example: You may not like your job at first, but by keeping an open mind, it may turn into the best career decision you could ever make.
You also don’t want your CV to put forward the notion that you are a ‘serial job happier’.
Keep this in mind: Leaving a job after 6 months because you have realised that career choice is wrong for you is acceptable. Leaving after a day is not.
Let’s have some fun: