Generally a career choice is made by one of the following ways
- Choosing what close friends have chosen - So bent upon on being together some don't pay attention to what is being taken up and go by friends' choice.
- Taking up what parents/family decide/enforce - It could be the mother's dream or the family tradition such that everyone in the family is pursuing the particular course and taking up the particular career path. (Also commonly referred to as ‘parampara')
- Following the trend - Science in 12th means Medicine or Engineering; Commerce in 12th means CA; and definitely no to arts at all ! This is the current trend. And a trend changes once in 8 years.
Is it not a student's right to make an informed career choice?
A student should be informed of all options available and then should make an independent, fair and unbiased choice.
Is it right to end up working for the sake of having taken up and completed the course without rightly identifying skill sets?
What if you end up as an engineering student while you have great communication skills? You could have made a successful marketing/HR professional.
Is it not important to understand your skills and ensure it is utilised in the best possible manner?
Is it not simply important to spend years and years in something you are really interested in?
They are all certainly important!
It is time students make conscious career choices well aware of skill sets, interest and options available.
If you are a student, you are now taking the first step towards making a conscious career choice. Congratulations.
In this article, I will be putting down points to:
- Help you understand your interests
- Help you understand your skills and strengths
- Prompt and guide you to collect all the information regarding options available
Let us look at 2 different scenario and take up a step-by-step approach.
Scenario 1: Student is aware of own interests
- List down your subject interests. It is good enough to identify subject interests. It could be taxation, accountancy, economics. Identify and list them down.
- Understand the various courses available so as to specialize in the specific subject interest. The list of courses for any particular subject can be obtained by a simple google search.
- Now, understand the employment opportunities for each such course option. It is essential to understand the reality before making a choice. Do a thorough research - contact seniors, contact veterans in the respective field, look for good articles on the web and put down all your points. Cover points such as employment scope, country, salary, growth opportunities, type of work one would perform etc.
In this step itself some course options are likely to get eliminated.
- Now you have a list of subject interests, course options for each subject and employment details for each course.
Before making a final choice, it is important to make note of your skills. Interest and skills put together makes a successful combination. For example you may be interested in the subject marketing but you may have the strength with numbers than with creativity which marketing as a job demands. Understanding your skills and strengths along with an understanding of the job type will help you make a better choice.
Graphology will help understand your skills and strengths better.
- It is now time to pick a course, by combining subject interests, scope of each course and skills sets. Thoroughly understand the pathway so as to pursue it and reach your goals. You can pick more than 1 course too, so that the 2nd course acts a cushion for the 1st.
Scenario 2: Student does not particularly own a subject interest yet and would like to explore all options
- First step here would be to list down the course options available for your stream.
- Then perform a thorough research about each course options including employment opportunities, job type, salary, growth etc. As mentioned above connect with seniors, veterans in each course, read articles to gather relevant information.
- Now that you have a list of courses and all the details of each, it is time to understand yourself better.
Perform a SWOT analysis of self (SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats). It simply means list down your strengths, weaknesses, skills to understand yourself better. Here graphology would really help you understand yourself and your personality better. A graphologist can help you list down your skills, strengths and suitable areas according to your personality type.
- Now it is time to match your skills and strengths with a suitable course with all the information available from the research done in step 2.
- It is now time to pick a course and thoroughly understand the pathway so as to pursue it and reach your goals.
*Graphology is a science through which a person's character and personality traits can be understood through his/her handwriting. Science notes that the movement of your hand while writing is controlled by your sub-conscious mind and hence handwriting denotes ones characteristics, current psychological state, skills, inclinations, traits and personality type. Graphology is extensively used in the European continent and England for crime detection, forensic document analysis and even for recruitment by companies for top positions. Graphology can be extremely helpful for personality development and career counselling.
Through the above steps you will be able to understand yourself and the world around better. It makes you as a student more informed. The best part is you can take up these steps at any point of time in your career, it is never late - even if you are working as a finance manager for 8 years, you may simply want to relook and consider if there are better options for yourself.
These steps will help you to be in a place where you are meant to be, pursuing the course you are interested in, taking up a role you have the skills for and involved in something you are passionate about for your entire life. This way life becomes more meaningful.
The idea of taking up a career is not simply to have a degree, make some regular income. It is about doing something you enjoy doing and something you are naturally good at; the idea is to have a content life, a life of bliss; ofcourse also making sufficient money for a living.
We all have one life, Let us make it worthy. And most importantly let us ensure we have not left any space for regrets.
'One of the greatest regrets in life is being what others what you to be rather than being yourself!'
'Life is too short to silence your personality.'
The author is a graphologist and a career guide herself. She helps students understand their skills and interests and also puts forth options available for them.