Sorry, this one isn’t very practical, down-to-earth, step-by-step type of advice.
But you know what?
If you’re like me, no step-by-step list will help, without giving you the big picture first.
Christopher Columbus spent his childhood and his teens sailing along the coast of Africa. He became a great navigator. Then, in the middle of his life he had a choice: keep doing what he has always done, or gamble and sail West.
You know his choice.
When looking for jobs there are basically two ways you can go:
- Choose from what’s already there. You choose from the jobs already done by others.
- Create your own job.
It’s like the Middle Ages. You can travel to known places, or risk it all and travel where no man has gone before.
The farther you go, the more dangerous it becomes. And the bigger the rewards.
There’s nothing wrong with choosing from the jobs already available. What’s more, it’s probably the best option if you’re just beginning your working life. But there’s a right and wrong way of doing it.
Did you know that a lot of great discoveries were done accidentally. Gunpowder, penicillin, plastic, to name a few.
Same way, you’ll likely discover your perfect job by accident. I became a teacher by accident.
Soon after coming to Japan, I applied for two vacancies: a kindergarten teacher and a used car salesman. My Japanese skill at that time wasn’t enough for the car job. So, I became a teacher.
And, guess what? I love teaching!
If you’re just starting, try different jobs and every time analyze what you liked about each of them and what you didn’t. Every job will have good and bad things about it.
Discover, what work conditions you need, and narrow down your list of options.
I would recommend working at a large company like a fast-food or retail chain. They usually have decent training programs in place. They’re like the army but you can quit any time 🙂
Having had variety of jobs will reveal your job needs. You like working with people or things? Outdoors or indoors? Selling or organizing?
You will also discover the red flags to watch out for.
Then, when you know what makes you tick, do it for a couple of years. There will be things you don’t like, sure. But choose one job that you mostly like doing, that you seem to have a knack for, and that’s somewhat meaningful to you.
There will be a time in your life when you will have to choose your career again.
Then, just like Christopher Columbus, you will have experience and credibility to go and discover your “New World!”
Have you ever had any “accidental jobs” that you liked? What did you like about them?