Tying Interests and Skills to A Rewarding Future
Career planning and management refer to thoroughly understanding an individual’s interests and strengths in guiding their career choices later on. Since it is a significant decision that will affect the rest of your life, it’s essential to find the best options available.
This is why as early as possible, it’s important to recognize sustainable career paths that can provide growth and development in all areas of life. Here are a few factors to consider in your pursuit of a fulfilling future.
Choosing the Right Career
The right career path is a subjective pursuit. There are exceedingly high-paying jobs, but they often come with limited opportunities for specialized positions. Additionally, there are also the factors of stress, self-fulfillment, and prospects of growth and development.
Although it appears overwhelming and even stressful, it is vital to identify career options available for children at a young age. By giving them something to aspire for, they can make guided decisions about other matters such as their hobbies or the courses they will take in their later studies.
Choosing the right career also translates to searching for jobs and setting professional goals. With a defined career trajectory, students can focus on the path they’ll set out for themselves, avoiding the risks of having to switch jobs or even, careers, later on in life.
A recent Gallup report reveals that about one in every five millennials, or 21% of the age group, has changed jobs in the previous year. Although there are several factors at play, including wage differences and working conditions, other young professionals leave jobs to look for opportunities in other fields–a potentially avoidable scenario with the proper planning and counseling.
Helping Teens Decide
Gone are the days when people pursue the same lofty goals. Now, there are more options to choose from, with most of them leading to high-skill, high-demand employment opportunities. The rise of blended learning strategies in schools has also allowed students to take a more active role in their education, allowing them to explore and appreciate other skill sets and fields of learning.
To deliver the idea of career planning to students, it is important to play into their interests. In fact, tools such as motivational books or podcasts can be instrumental in helping guide their passion to purpose. They can help drive learning and even guide career direction.
Similarly, a 2016 study from the Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain Sciences recommends four types of interventions that help foster interest, as well as the science behind each of them. These interest-centered interventions include the use of attention-getting settings, developing contexts that address individual interests, a problem-based approach to learning, and highlighting the usefulness of every lesson.
The study also highlights that each of the interventions listed above focuses on promoting situational interest, the psychological state resulting in increased effort and attention exerted for a particular moment. Over time, this is further cultivated to become a child’s persisting predisposition toward that specific experience, which the researchers termed as the individual interest.
Similarly, parents or guardians can also help children decide on a career path apart from the school. They can do so by encouraging the following behavior at home:
- Talking about their dreams, aspirations, career ideas, and plans.
- Helping them research possible careers and job opportunities aligned with their interests.
- Actively participating in school events and encouraging kids to share regular updates on what they do at school.
- Fostering an environment where children can freely express themselves without fear of judgment or reprisal.
Similarly, there are events and activities that could further help your children explore possibilities and find things that spark joy and excitement in them. Whether they’d pursue traditional academic paths or check out Career and Technical Education (CTE) academies.
Benefits of an Interest and Skill-Driven Career Choice
There are a number of factors that affect career choices. It includes practical considerations such as salary and employability, as well as the perception of the people around them about certain jobs and fields.
Although there are a lot of elements that affect career choices, most people will agree on the critical role that the human factor plays. Below are some advantages of pursuing career options grounded on interests and skills.
1. An Incentive for Commitment
Every career option has its own set of challenges, which could weed out people who are not willing to put in extra effort to make it work. While learning skills and knowledge relevant to a specific field might feel overwhelming and tedious for some, there are people who can easily adapt—owing to their prior interest in the field. More than just facing challenges, an interest-driven professional trajectory is seen as a labor of love that is willing to weather challenges in order to meet self-defined goals.
2. Satisfaction with Achievements
Success is often correlated with meeting and maintaining high standards, coming from colleagues and organizations. Multiple studies have attested to how people who enjoy their jobs have a generally more positive attitude toward work. This increases their resistance to fatigue from work-related challenges and at the same time, amplifies the satisfaction and drive they receive from getting the work done.
3. Driving Innovation
People with genuine interest and passion in their profession are assets to their organization. They can be trusted to go beyond what is expected of them and find new ways to improve existing products and processes, driving innovation in the process.
Career choices are significant and often long-term decisions, that’s why it’s essential to get children involved in the conversation about their future. With the changing landscape for career opportunities, alternatives that are not as viable, or as popular, as they were decades ago, may open new possibilities for paths that better align with their interests and skills.
If you’re looking for professional guidance on how to better capitalize on your child’s skills and interests for a sustainable and rewarding future, you might want to check out eDynamic Learning. It’s a global leader in digital curriculum for career and technical education and elective courses, offering comprehensive programs to help students worldwide find opportunities that suit them best for career, college, and beyond.