Don’t like your current career? You’re not alone: few of us pick the right job on our first try. But if you are thinking about changing jobs, you probably want to find the right career this time. If you aren’t sure where to start, do some job research before you make any decisions. Whether it’s your first or 10th career, here is some advice on finding the ideal job.
Things to remember about the ideal job
When researching potential careers, there are a few things to remember…
You might be attracted to a job because of its glamorous portrayal on TV: a lawyer comes to mind. However the vast majority of lawyers questioned by the American Bar Association say they wouldn’t recommend their profession to other people.
Often you don’t get the full picture when you’re admiring someone’s success. You may covet their current lifestyle, but are you so keen to make the commitment they made to reach it? Becoming a writer is a dream of many, but many successful writers spent years writing with little recognition or payment for their efforts. This isn’t such an appealing prospect.
Be aware of potential dangers
How many of us have dreamt of starting our own business? Unfortunately, most businesses owners initially have to cope with little income and time for themselves and often their families. And that’s not counting the majority that fail.
Resources to find the right career
If after reading all that you’re still thinking about changing jobs, how can you find the right career that offer you meaning and satisfaction? Are you wondering what experience and qualifications are required for a job you’re interested in, what the average salary is and how to find job listings? The following resources can help.
The Internet can be an excellent starting point for researching career paths. Job Outlook is a careers and labour market research information site with information on around 350 individual occupations, including job prospects and salaries.
For specific occupation information, use online search engines to identify appropriate sites, for example, Google ‘science careers’ or ‘design jobs.
Another valuable research tool is networking. Once you know what careers and industries interest you, talk to people already in similar jobs and get information about their profession and the type of work they do. Often referred to as ‘information interviewing’ this can be a way to find out more about potential opportunities and also what additional skills or qualifications you might need. Family, friends, teachers, neighbours and colleagues are all possible sources of information and/or referrals.
Professional associations and industry organisations
There are professional or trade organisations for just about every career field. Organisations such as Engineers Australia and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia can be useful sources of information about a career area/industry.
At career expos, industries and employers promote themselves and provide detailed information about themselves, including current and future job vacancies. They are a good way to connect with employers, education and training providers, and job opportunities. An example includes The National Careers and Employment Expo.
Volunteering in relevant roles with charitable and not for profit organisations is a great way to experience a potential career. Check online volunteering websites such as Seek Volunteer and directly approach organisations to identify opportunities. Another benefit of volunteering is that it can provide you with valuable experience in your field to put on your resume.
Career coaching to find the right career
Career coaching can help you navigate all the potential options open to you, enabling you to find the right career and work out what jobs interest you and suit your experience and qualifications.If your role has been made redundant recently, your former employer may offer outplacement services which you can use to discuss possible career pathways and training options.