Many career driven readers need to know what factors into choosing a good career, how to prepare for this career, and when it is appropriate to switch careers. If you are asking yourself what career you should choose, make sure to factor in the following five points into your decision making process.
- Find your passion. Corny perhaps, but true. Finding a passion is the most crucial factor in finding a good career. Regardless of what the media portrays, successful people work long hours, sometimes fighting straight through 15 or 16 hours of hard labor. In such a stressful environment, you better like what you’re doing. Without a passion and purpose to drive you, you will inevitably leave your career goals by the wayside.
- People throw money at interesting things. Research and look into what areas you have worked in. Find out how much money it’s making. Money is the attention unit of society and if people find something interesting, they will throw money at it. Other than the innovative areas that have not yet been discovered, you can determine what careers are viable by what sectors are doing well now.
- It really isn’t ever too late. True, if you switch careers, you will be the low man on the totem pole for at least a short while. There is no getting around this. However, if you are truly passionate about another career, willing to work from the ground up, and ready to learn about the area, go for it. You need to realize the immense opportunity cost of sticking around in the wrong career.
- Start preparing early. A significant portion of America’s society has set up the false belief that high school and college are all about having fun and trying different things. That’s okay, but sometimes it’s nice to have a purpose and follow it. Your career is your life and there is no reason to delay starting your life. This doesn’t mean parents need to grind a career into their children; however, starting early gives kids a sense of purpose and direction. For example, my oldest daughter in middle school wants to be a paleontologist, she interns with designers and engineers to see what paleontologists do on a daily basis. This early exposure is optimal for finding the right career.
- Vocational schools are great when applicable. If you know you want to pursue a specific career, vocational schools are very advantageous, especially for hands-on careers. In vocational schools, talent is very focused and does not get dispersed. In college, I sat through my higher-level math courses only to never use the information again. Instead, I could have spent time on other things relevant to her career.
As the destabilized economy struggles to make a comeback, many readers wonder what are the top careers for the future. The two most promising fields: technology and health care.
- The Future: Any technology, especially cloud computing, that makes it easier to have technological solutions without having the technology in the office is emerging at the forefront of business as one of the top careers for the future. The technology market will only continue to grow bigger and bigger
- The Competition: Competition is low in America’s technology market now and Silicon Valley is always in need of more engineers. Competition will start to grow, but America’s education system is not strong enough to effectively compete in the global economy yet. Many companies are outsourcing for engineering resources because it is much more cost effective. However, Americans will be able to compete in the future.
Regardless of whether engineers overseas cost less, work takes longer and is done incorrectly because of the language barrier. If America can produce well educated engineers, overseas competition will not matter so much in the future. Americans, the last free people in the world, have been historically intelligent and very scrappy.
When the necessity level rises to a certain point, the United States will make a come back. Above all, Americans need to stop complaining and square away the education system. Furthermore, Silicon Valley needs support. As the heart innovation, Silicon Valley and its expanding technology market have the potential to turn America around.
- Competitive advantages: Fluency in other languages of emerging markets is key, including Asian languages, Spanish, Portuguese, and in time, maybe even Middle Eastern languages. Because so many companies are expanding their global offices, those who are fluent enough to communicate with a global team and figure out how to handle e-commerce in Asia will dominate in technology.
Silicon Valley flourishes when its technology sector figures out how to target emerging markets overseas.In addition, a background in engineering is optimal. Engineers translate thoughts into the physical universe better than anyone else. This skill will always be needed in the technology field. As Bromund said, “if there isn’t an engineer to turn dreams into reality, we’re screwed.”
- The Future: Health care isn’t going anywhere. Although its growth depends on the government, Bromund predicts it will get overhauled in some other way. Regardless of the government’s actions, health care is going to be a large field in the future.
- The Competition: Although 2008 and 2009 were major exceptions, there will be a lot of competition to find nurses and doctors. Especially on the aging side of health care, there will be plenty of openings as well as a shortage of health care professionals. However, compared to the exciting forefront of technology, health care is a relatively lackluster field unless it especially interests you.
- Competitive advantage: Quite simply, attend nursing schools to become a nurse or medical school to become a doctor. There will always be a demand for these professions.