Today, parents and children alike feel confusion, bordering on depression, while finalizing which career to opt for. More often than not, a decision is taken based on the opinion of friends & neighbors, and under duress of peer & family pressure; while at times, it is dictated by the option that is currently enjoying a boom in the market.
Consequently, students end up in a situation, where they are either uncomfortable about the subject(s) they study; or, find it increasingly difficult in coping with the demands of their stream; or, lose interest altogether. Irrespective of the reason, they stop putting in their 100%; and slowly lose command over what they are studying.
The final result: not only do they not get good jobs, but the scope of further opportunities also dries up.
A relevant question that arises is: How do we select a career? Alternatively, which is the best way to select a career? The answer is, in fact, quite simple, but often we are not ready to devote the time, effort, and attention it entails.
To begin with, parents need to accept that every child is different; and is born with some or other unique set of skills, abilities, and capabilities. This is the first step in ensuring they do not take a wrong decision, for which their child pays penalty throughout his/her life by struggling in a job they do not like, which might lead to depression, or some other ill-effect.
So, while choosing which career to opt for:
Consult a career counselor/expert, who, through a personality test of the child will pinpoint his/her strengths, weakness, interest areas, and other relevant aspect that even the child himself/herself might be unaware of
Confer with a teacher the child is close to, who will provide an unbiased view about his/her capabilities. Keeping in mind, a teacher can easily identify the strong and weak points of each of his/her students, he/she can be the ideal person to act as a guide in taking this crucial decision.
Have family members, and even family friends, contribute in deciding a child’s career. However, chances are their views will be through rose-tinted glasses. The reason being, family members tend to be partial towards traditional careers, such as engineering & medical sciences that they consider safe & secure, while neglecting options like law, mass communication, fashion designing, management, and others.
Choosing a career is one of the most critical steps in a child’s life. Neither can it be imposed, based on what others are doing, nor can it be ascertained by what is currently in fashion. The key lies in identifying each child’s unique capabilities and interest areas; and then homing in on a career option that is in sync with his/her personality.
Riya Jawla MBA, M.A. (Economics)
Personality Development Trainer
Branch Head (Career Launcher, Meerut)