Career: It is one of the easiest words to write and spell, but when applied to an individual, it becomes one of the most dreaded words that one can encounter. And when it comes to career development, even the best of us are left baffled at times. This post is about taking career and personality development to the next level by doing what you care about, and not necessarily what others are doing or saying that you should do.
In all our years of giving guidance to students, job seekers, friends and family looking to pursue different careers, MBAs, or even in switching jobs, we have found that most people don’t really know what they want to achieve in their life. Rather, more often than not they are following a path they have seen others follow. In fact, even if you go to a top school whether it is Kellogg’s, Chicago, Harvard, most people define success by the kind of company that chooses to hire them. There is nothing wrong with doing so at face value and many successful people have done this at critical turning points in their career. However, this only leads to happiness if it is aligned with one’s interests and sustained strengths.
So how does one avoid this? What’s the magic formula- how to find your passion and choose a path where you really will be satisfied? The truth is that there is no magic formula, but there are a few steps that you can take on the path towards your perfect career.
Step 1: Think about not only what you like to do but also what you are good at. If you like what you do and are good at it, you are more likely to succeed and continue to be good at what you do, and find joy in what you do.
Step 2: Talk to others and explore what options/possibilities exist. This is the first place where you can give others a chance to guide you. Find mentors early on in your career as having the right mentors can have an unimaginable influence on your career. They help you not only explore what you can do, but also explore your strengths and interests in a way only you can.
Step 3: This depends on where you are in your career, whether you are a student or an active or passive job seeker networking is your best friend. Make sure you are always making friends with people and creating a connection, you never know who can help you get to where you want to go and when they could become the critical person in your life. With the exception of formal recruiting in schools, most people find their jobs through networking.
Step 4: Target where you want to be and create a long-term view of how you can get there. Some times it may not be straightforward to get to where you want to be, but you may need to take intermediate steps. Create a plan for your career, which may change but will still guide you as you progress.
Step 5: Take a close view of where you are and how you can get the experiences you are looking for in your present before you move into your future.
Step 6: Enjoy and relax! You live only once. It’s only one element of your life right?
We hope that if you follow all these steps, you will able to achieve what you truly desire, and not what others desire for you. After all, your heart will always know the answer!