Choosing the right career as you are finishing your school can throw you into a confused state. However, that need not be. A little bit of planning and thinking with a clear head can help you move forward in the right direction. Here are four steps you need to follow to ensure you are working towards the right career.
Step 1: Make a probable stream list
By the time you reach high school, most children get an inkling of what they want to do. Albeit, there are seemingly cool jobs or too many job-related advice that can confuse even the most clear-headed person.
The first thing you need to focus on is the subjects you like, and the possible streams you would like to study. For example, you might love English, and also have a penchant for writing well; then it is a good idea to look at Journalism or Mass Communication as a study stream.
You have to make a ‘like’ and ‘don’t like’ list regarding the streams you think you would like to study. Write down the pros and cons. This will give you clarity on how to move forward. You have to have an answer to why you want to study in a certain stream. You can discuss with your teachers or parents to figure this one out.
Step 2: Identify your talent and aptitude
Once you have listed the subjects and streams. You have to check out your latent talent in the selected subjects. You can check out old books and online subject related research sites to understand whether what you have selected takes into account your talents and existing skillsets.
Check out online career assessment tool. Most of these are free and they help you understand what kind of talent or skillsets you have and the possible streams that will help you make most of that. Career aptitude tests also help in similar ways. It will give you information about your personality traits and the kind of occupations that will fit you.
Step 3: Create a job list
By now you have an understanding of your likes and dislikes related to a subject or possible career. Now start to create your list. You will find that once you have eliminated streams and subjects that do not suit your aptitude, you have a more narrowed down, more comprehensive future career list.
When you make a career list, start with the ones that seem little futuristic. Research on the types of jobs and see the ones that seem to have a stronger prospect outlook. In your list again check for the duties of a job you like and the one that you do not like. Also, make a list of the kind of jobs you think will suit your personality traits.
Your list should not be more than 6 jobs long. Check for all the skill sets needed and other qualifications you may have to attend.
Step 4: Visualise yourself five years from the present
Now that you have your list of jobs you might want to do or the careers that you feel suit your talents, try to see your growth story for the next five years. Again you will have to extensive research to figure out the growth path of every career in your list. Explore the occupations you might want to do in the future. See what appeals to you, and what you feel most matches your skill sets and talents shown to you by the career assessment tools.
At this point, start to narrow down your list even more. Based on what you learned from your research so far, begin eliminating the careers you don’t want to pursue any further. You should end up with fewer than two to five occupations on your “short list.”
If your reasons for finding a career unacceptable are non-negotiable, cross it off your list. Remove everything with duties that don’t appeal to you. Eliminate careers that have weak job outlooks. Get rid of any occupation if you are unable to or unwilling to fulfil the educational or other requirements, or if you lack some of the soft skills necessary to succeed in it. Pick the career that you think will bring you the most satisfaction based on the information you have gathered and your talent in the area.