Taking a Stand: Tips on Choosing the Right Career Path

Since we all have different skills, interests, experiences and expectations, there’s no one career that’s best for everyone. So how do you choose the career that’s best for you?

The first 5 years are said to be the most crucial as far as career development is concerned for fresh graduates; if you’re a fresh graduate, you’re very much encouraged to put in hard work in your first corporate ‘gig’. This stage will lay the foundation of your progress, so it’s crucial that you take it seriously– not exerting enough effort will either result to a need to change careers (which is not good in today’s work world where targeting is the strongest trend) or complete failure.

Needless to say, you’ll not only put your personal brand on the line without hard work but also your dreams (and indirectly, your university qualification). After everything you’d gone through as a jobseeker with zero experience — because of the tight competition for jobs — you wouldn’t want your effort to go to waste. Earning your first Sales job or Marketing job or IT job hadn’t been easy, and it would be a big waste of time if you messed this first job of yours up.

EFFORT is called for, but what about other things? Are there other values that you, as a fresh graduate, are advised to embrace/exude/practice during this crucial stage?

I made a list of the other values you’d need as a fresher in the corporate world!

FOCUS is another important value. Having just entered the corporate world (where slacking off is not the least bit tolerated unlike in schools), this can be a big challenge to your goals of achieving corporate success. However, if you fully encourage yourself to become a better dedicated person, then things won’t go out of hand. The key here is motivating yourself to take action and fighting off the urge to remain idle. If you’re true to your goals for success, it won’t take long before you locate your biggest source of motivation and be able to take advantage of it.

You can’t? Think about it: Do you really truly want to start your corporate quest NOW? Perhaps, you’re in denial. Something like this happens to many fresh graduates who opted to job hunt immediately after graduation. Just be true to yourself. Perhaps, a month of vacation can help you to reach your answer.

And then, there’s RESOURCEFULNESS. As a fresh graduate, although you’ve gained skills via school club memberships, it won’t be easy to impress corporate bosses with just those qualifications. Developing resourcefulness as a skill will speed up your learning — you’ll discover easier and faster ways of acquiring certain skills. And because it’s easier and faster to acquire skills via those ‘ways’, you’ll definitely seek for more and more opportunities to train–you can only hope that your company is particular with training and development.

Oh! there comes ENDURANCE– endurance for challenges and also temptations to job hop. The corporate world is an entirely new realm; you’d have to have the knack for enduring harsh realities such as defeats and failures. Without endurance, you’d find yourself quitting like a scared child.

If choosing a career feels like too much pressure, here’s another option: Pick a path that feels right today by making the best decision you can, and know that you can change your mind in the future. In today’s workplace, choosing a career doesn’t necessarily mean you have to stick with that line of work for your entire life. Make a smart decision, and plan to re-evaluate down the line based on your long-term objectives.

Recognize that you’ll change as time rolls on. Your needs for money, freedom, balance, and recognition will change with you. But for now, think through each of these values, and you’ll be well on your way to choosing a career that’s best for you.

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  1. Very good article. I like what you have to say about passions, but more important your dream job is not about money. It’s about fulfilling all of your needs

  2. Sarah Kolo says:

    This is an insightful article, even if im already 3years beyond a fresh graduate. Just left my teaching job of 3 years cos I coundnt cope anymore with the demands and stress. Studied Human Anatomy in school and now im wishing I didn’t opt for a job immediately. probably would gone for masters or back for medicine. but funny enough Im more experienced now and im hopeful especially with this write up, I could still change my career path. Thanks. Please reply

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