One of the key questions that usually arises during the career guidance and career coaching processes, is related to the main driver of your choice. Might a trade-off exist between what you are really passionate about and what you believe could be more profitable? Is it possible to have both? If not, which one should you prioritise? We find people whose priority is to find a position that gives them social prestige, people looking for a profession that gives them money to have certain well-being and lifestyle while others are inclined to find an activity they really enjoy and feel is a true ‘calling‘. This is valid not only when choosing among different job options, but also when deciding whether to study a Master degree, what studies to select when attending a college or university, and so on.
Let’s begin by clarifying that, a priori, there are no good or bad decisions in this regard. It all depends on what you are looking for, what your expectations are and how well this choice suits your priorities and values.
Selection for economic reasons
The choice of a career solely or mainly by monetary issues, usually happens when the person:
- Is accustomed to a certain socioeconomic status and wants to keep it.
- Cannot resolve deeper professional or personal questions, so decides to focus on external factors in order not to have to deal with that difficulty.
It is usually difficult to modify the course of action when the studies were chosen based on a project of material gain. Students who made that decision have almost always visualized themselves as living in a rich environment, full of resources, and so on.. During our personalised career guidance processes we do not seek to persuade prospective students to avoid this decision, but we help them to be sure that they have thought of all the pros and cons and that they can see the differences between the imagined and real world, between the desired career and what the working world could offer as a job. There is a possibility that everything will turn out as envisioned, but also a possibility that the obstacles are greater than those intended. What we seek is to verify that no choice was taken for granted. And for those who have not passed through a career guidance process in their past and are facing dissatisfaction in their current professional life, this question is also one of the first to be faced in the career coaching processes, as it has key implications in their future plans.
To succeed or not to succeed…
In order to reach a decision consistent with yourself, what really matters is to identify what your own concept of success is, what things you think would make you happy at work. It is also necessary to consider that perhaps your first job will not be as great as you dreamed it would be, and that you will experience a couple of jobs before you start achieving the goals you set out for yourself. But, as Viktor Frankl taught in his book “Man’s Search for Meaning”: everything is easier and clearer when you have a meaning, a vision that you have chosen and which serves you as a guide in your professional and personal journey.