Last week I asked you to make a list of your interests and possible career profiles you can think of. I also suggested you to consider the opinions of your friends while making the list. It is a tiring job I know. I did it too. Here is my list:
Nanotechnology, Photography, Cryptography, Computer science, Writing-blogging, Management and business, Web design, Cooking, Astrophysics, Law.
I sincerely hope you have your list with you now.
Prioritize the list
Consider 3 factors:
- Skill level: how much you already know and what skills you require to pursue the career choice.
- Interest level: Is it something you are passionate about? Would you do it just for fun knowing that nobody will pay you?
- Trial period: Is there a way you can try out the given job for a short time period? like an internship or part-time job maybe?In other words, is it feasible to try out now?(More on it next week)
My prioritized list:
- Nanotechnology: interest+skill
- Photography: interest+feasibility
- Astrophysics: interest+feasibility
- Computer science: skill+feasibility
- Writing/Blogging: interest+feasibility
- Cryptography: interest
- Law: interest
- Cooking: interest+feasibility
- Web design: interest
- Management & Business
When you are settled with the broad field(s) you think you can work in, ask yourself the following questions:
- Does it require some special knowledge or skill set? e.g. being a scientist would require you to study the subject in a lot detail. You need to do a Ph.D first. Are you prepared for those long hours of study and lab work?
- Does it require physical fitness? Suppose you want to be a firefighter. Are you fit to do the job? Both mentally and physically?
- Can you meet/contact some experts in the selected field of interest? They can give you an insider’s view of what the work actually would be like.
What if you have no contacts and no prior knowledge?
- Join online classes or local community classes on the subject.
- Collect as much information you can get through the internet.
- Find out email addresses of some experts working in the field you are interested in. Drop them an email and ask what you want to ask. Most people love to talk about their jobs.
- Research about the companies/agencies offering jobs in the area you are interested in.
- Read books about the subject.
- Get fit. Both physically and mentally.
In summary,get as much information as you can about the career you want to pursue. Find the gaps and skills you are lacking in and try to fill in these gaps. The goal is not to become an expert but to have a basic idea about the subject. It doesn’t matter what kind of job you’ll actually be doing, you only need to understand the basics for now.
Once you know the fundamental aspects of the career you are interested in, you can move on to the next step. More on that next week!