8 Mistakes People Make When Choosing a Career
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Finding the right job can be a tough and complicated process. One simple way to make that process easier is to avoid common mistakes that plague most job-seekers.
"Finding out your unique skills should be the first thing any job-seeker or student does before changing your life for your job or investing your hard-earned, even borrowed, money in education," said Robert Dickie III, president of Crown Financial Ministries, a Christian-based nonprofit financial organization. "Today, choosing a career is generally not a one-time decision; it's a series of decisions, made through different stages of life, experience and responsibility. But with more than 60 percent of Americans saying they are not satisfied with their current jobs, it seems obvious that it's time to consider new patterns for choosing a profession."
To avoid being part of the 60 percent of Americans who hate their jobs, Dickie has the following mistakes to avoid in your job search. They include:
- Don’t choose the first or easiest job you can get: "To choose a job based on its ease is not being a good steward of talents and abilities," Dickie said. "Our goal should always be to move into areas in which we use our strengths."
- Don’t choose a job based on salary: "This error is so established in our culture that it'll take a strong commitment to a larger vision to choose a job based on talents, rather than on money alone," Dickie said. "And if that high-paying job disappears, your resume advertises you with skills in a profession you may hate."
- Don’t choose a job because it provides a good title: "Doing what you're good at and what you enjoy is generally a far better consideration in choosing a career than selecting a title and doing the work that accompanies it. You are not your title," Dickie said.
- Don’t take a job just because management offers it: "Discuss your work-related attributes with your employer to indicate the areas that will be the best fit for you," Dickie said. You may be better off expanding your area of responsibility in your present job, instead of moving away from your skills and area of expertise.
- Don’t choose a job because that's what your parents do: "While it is fine to follow in your parents' footsteps, make sure that you share their skill sets and passions for the work," Dickie said. "Don't choose a career track only because that's what your parents do. Discover your gifts and develop your career plans around them."
- Don’t choose a job to fulfill your parents' unfulfilled dream: "Parents must be careful not to steer their children toward something the parents would like alone; rather, children should be encouraged to follow a career path that best suits them," Dickie said.
- Don’t choose a job just because you have the minimum ability to do it: "There are many jobs we can do, but a job that involves our strongest skills, our personalities and our motivations will take us farther and last longer," Dickie said.
- Don’t choose a job or major without any serious study of yourself: "Before investing years of your life or possibly hundreds of thousands of dollars in education, take serious time to reflect on your skills and interest," Dickie said. "Don't spend more time researching the next car you'll buy than you spend researching your career."