Thursday, January 16, 2014

Making Career Decisions

Making career-related decisions can be one of the most challenging aspects of the career planning process. There are various factors you should consider when making such decisions. Our friends at Cosmic Coaching Centre wrote a great article for us with some important things to keep in mind:

Making Decisions about Your Career

Choosing a career is one of the biggest decisions we have to make in our lives. In fact, this decision of ours may determine the quality of life we are going to have, not only in terms of our finances, but also when it comes how satisfied we are with our lives. With that said, it is just right that we think a thousand times before deciding on which career path to take. This isn’t going to be an easy process, though, but if you could keep your focus on what really matters, you are likely to find the career that would suit you perfectly.

Factors to Consider in Making a Career Decision

Required educational level. Jobs may vary significantly in terms of the educational level required from job applicants. So if you don’t feel like going to school for 4 years to earn a degree, you may as well find a career that requires less. Take into consideration also the long-term education you may be required to have to retain your license.

Passion. This factor is often neglected by those who are merely after the security and financial stability a career can offer. But you have to understand that for you to stay long in a job, you need to be happy doing it. This is only possible if you use your passion as a basis of your career choice.

Skills and abilities. It’s good that you are passionate about something, but this passion won’t be enough to make you successful in your career. It is equally important that you have the skills and abilities required by the job. To know if you have what it takes to succeed in a particular job, use various skills assessment tools to test yourself. The results of such test will help you determine which skills you need to enhance more in order to be qualified for your desired career.

Personal life. If you are a fresh graduate, it won’t be that hard for you to choose a career that’s demanding, especially of your time. But for those who have families of their own, choosing a career is a bit more complicated. This is because conflict of interest is inevitable. If you are put in the second situation, you must seriously consider the demands of the job you’re going to get. You also have to be ready for however it may affect your personal life and relationships.

Career advancement opportunities. Ultimately, it is your goal to excel in your field. This means that you would be dedicated and committed enough to deserve a promotion perhaps. So when deciding among your career options, take a look at the opportunities for advancement that a certain career offers. This way, you may set your mind into achieving a higher career goal.

Career Services has several resources that can help you make these decisions, including career assessments like Career Cruising and Type Focus. These can be accessed for free through CareerZone!

 Also, check out the Occupational Research section of our website for directories and databases that have tons of information needed to inform these vital decisions!

Once you have narrowed down your career choices, you may want to conduct some Information Interviews to make sure the career is right for you! Our Career Resource Centre has some great tips for gathering the information you need to make decisions andtranslating that information into action. Best of luck!

Jami Coughler, Senior Career Assistant
4th Year Public Health [Honours]; BA: Sociology [Honours] '11  

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