Your one-stop guide to choosing the right career path

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July 13th 2023

Your one-stop guide to choosing the right career path

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Let’s talk about choosing the right career path. We get it — it’s sort of like standing in front of a crossroad... Scratch that, it’s more like standing in front of Shibuya Crossing (where 2.5 million people cross Tokyo every single day). So many options, so many possibilities!

Do you follow your passion and risk not having any opportunities for growth, but keep your artistic integrity? Or, do you go stable route and risk potentially not enjoying your job, but living comfortably? Talk about mind games!

Education requirements, salary, family commitments and career development are just some of the factors that play a role in making this huge life decision. Also, picking a career path isn’t like choosing between pizza or a lasagne at your fave Italian — it’s a choice with a long lasting life impact.

Stressed? Don’t be! We are here to break it down into 5 simple steps to finding the right career path for you!

The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. —Steve Jobs

Think about it: we spend on average 40 hours per week at work. The rest of the time? Sleeping, eating (and hopefully) connecting with our nearest and dearest – when we’re not commuting to and from work, that is.

That’s all to say, do what you love! Not to get deep, but, how you spend your days is how you ultimately spend your life too.

When you spend such a huge chunk of your time at work, you need to ensure that it is something you find fulfilling, sustainable and exciting. The goal is to find a career that reduces your chances of chronic stress, burnout and imposter syndrome. The question is, how?

Make a list of careers that sound appealing to you

Put together a list of 4-6 career paths that spark your interest. Trust your gut instincts with this! Get in touch with your inner child – what did they used to do as ‘play’? Got them? Perfect. Now’s your moment to do your research on each and every option.

Look into what training and/or education is required, what the responsibilities are, what the growth opportunities look like and what the job market is doing right now.

Want to find out what a working day in the life looks like as a Social Media Manager or Software Engineer? Discover our “411” series on different career paths:

Figure out what your essentials are

What matters most to you in a career? Keep in mind that this is a long-term decision so it is best to think ahead (like… way way ahead). Will this career path allow me the flexibility to take paternity leave? Would this role enable me to WFH? Does this career offer a 401k? Will this role serve me when the time comes to diverge into starting my own business?

Remember, this is your journey. Don’t be suckered into the job craze everyone else is lusting after. You know what appeals to you more. Doing this self-reflection is important when discovering where your priorities lie. Also, it is essential to position yourself on the path to success in both your work life and personal.

Match your personality with your career

And we’re not just talking zodiac signs… One of best ways to find that perfect career match is by taking personality tests like Myer-Briggs to really get into the nooks and crannies of what makes you tick and what gets you stoked!

Is it building and maintaining connections with people then doing your utmost to get them on the front page of The Times? Yeah? Well, have you thought about P.R? Remember: honesty is the best policy. To get the most out of these quizzes – answer based on the person that you are, not the one you want to be. We can manifest that later!

Work perks: Turn your passions into a 9 to 5

What are you doing on a Sunday when you have no-one to meet up with and nowhere to be? What are your passions and can they be translated into a career? It’s as Confucius said: “Find a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” Easier said than done though, right?

There’s a reason why gamers do so well in tech careers. Their passion has conditioned them into being strategic, problem-solvers that find thrills in discovering loopholes. Did someone say Software Engineering?!

One thing that helped me to find my ‘calling’ was to figure out what a genuine ‘work perk’ was for me. I realised it wasn’t boozy business brunches (bye bye, Sales Team) or meeting famous celebrities (au revouir, journalism) and it wasn’t even getting sent free stuff in the mail (hasta la vista, Influencing career).

But it WAS getting free press night tickets to see off-Broadway shows. The penny dropped, and I suddenly realised I had to work in the theatre industry. Lightbulb moment! So, ask yourself what your ideal ‘work perk’ would be – and then figure out the right industry, company or role to make that happen.

Stalk the job market endlessly

Make job boards (like Parallel… *nudge nudge, wink wink*) your new crush! Put the kettle on and get scrolling until your thumb’s sore.

This strategy works wonders because it’s a reminder of how many job opportunities are out there waiting for talented people like you. Found a match? Perfect. Get very familiar with the listings in this industry. What are companies consistently looking for in terms of candidates education and/or experience? What are companies typically offering for this role?

Take Social Media Managing for instance – brands will require you to have a portfolio or proof (from your own social accounts) that you can deliver on their growth and engagement expectations. By getting the heads up on this deal breaker, you will be able to customize your CV/resumé and prep for the interview in advance.

Remember: choosing the right career path doesn’t have to be daunting! Any step forward is the step in the right direction as long as you’re chasing a career that is fulfilling, sustainable and exciting …and if it’s not?! You can ALWAYS hit refresh and reroute. We believe in you!

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