10 questions to ask yourself before choosing a career

It is obvious that your career choice will have a great influence on your future. The path you decide to follow is likely to define your personality, contribute to your personal growth, define your lifestyle, determine your income, feed your family and secure your retirement.

For this reason, do not let the opinions or expectations of others govern your decision: it is yours alone! In this article, we tell you how to choose a profession. What factors to consider and how to evaluate the different options available to you are some of the questions that will allow you to make the best decision for your future. 

Interests, values ​​and personality traits

1. What are my interests?

Your hobbies can help determine which occupations you might thrive and grow in. To pinpoint your interests, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are my hobbies?
  • Do I prefer to stay indoors or, on the contrary, be outdoors?
  • Do I enjoy working with other people, animals, data or books?
  • What activities would I miss the most if I had to put them aside?

2. What are my values?

We all have values ​​or principles that are important to us, such as financial security, social justice or work/life balance. These values ​​can help you determine which career might be right for you. For example, consider a career with high salaries if you place a high value on financial security. Conversely, a job with standard office hours will suit you better if you value your work/life balance.

3. What is my personality?

Your personality is defined by your thoughts, your feelings and your behavior. It can play an important role in your career, so you need to analyze its different aspects when thinking about your future.

  • Are you a leader or a follower?
  • Do you prefer to work alone or in a group?
  • Are you more team or competitive?
  • Do you like to help others or do you prefer to give them the keys that allow them to get by?
  • Are you more thinking or doing?
  • Are you a creative, out-of-the-box person, or do you thrive in a structured, routine environment?

Skills, qualities and training

4. What are my skills?

You already have a whole range of skills that can help you succeed in a few years. Determine your personal skills and your professional skills (soft skills vs. hard skills).

  • Vocational skills: Skills acquired through study and apprenticeship, such as culinary arts or computer programming.
  • Personal skills: relationship skills and life skills, such as teamwork or time management.

Don’t forget that your skill set can be expanded and consolidated at any time and that new skills can be acquired throughout your life. These are not all the same some shortcomings which will deter you from starting a career in such or such field. Also, let yourself be guided by the skills you already have. Next challenge: determining what your skills development needs are and which are worthy of further development.

5. What are my talents and strengths?

Since your childhood, you have had talents and strengths that make you unique and will ensure your professional success. According to Sir Ken Robinson, author of The Element, Out of Our Minds :

You need to make sure you spend part of your day or week doing what you are good at and feel good about yourself.

If you don’t know your talents and strengths, make a list of all the tasks you’re good at. Your family, friends, teachers, boss and mentors can help you compile this list, which will help you narrow down your career choices.

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6. What training do I need?

Some careers require an advanced educational background, as well as some financial investment. For example, the course leading to a doctor of medicine degree lasts between 8 and 12 years, compared to 4 for a bachelor’s degree in hotel management. Don’t overlook the time and money it takes to reach the job you’re aiming for.

Maybe you feel like you’ve mastered some job skills but you’re missing a piece of the puzzle? know that soft skills, such as effective communication, are in high demand for management positions in the hospitality industry. Other skills such as communication, leadership, critical thinking, organization, follow-up, cultural competence, flexibility and customer service, to name a few, are assets in the hospitality industry.

According to Daniel Ciapponi, lecturer at EHL Passugg, these soft skills are currently lacking in the hospitality industry, what he calls a skills gap. Therefore, developing and honing these skills will give any candidate a competitive edge.

Generally, the higher the salary range, the higher the level of education required. Any career path deserves an investment of time and money; it is up to you to decide if it is worth it FOR YOU.

Salary and lifestyle

7. What are my salary expectations?

Not all industries are equal when it comes to compensation. Even if the salary should not be the main criterion for choosing a job, it plays a role in your quality and place of life. Do not overlook this aspect when comparing your different options.

8. Where do I want to live?

Some jobs are available all over the world, while other trades are practiced only in very specific places. For example, you will probably have to live in a rural environment if you choose to become a forest ranger or a farmer. On the other hand, you will probably need to live near an urban area if you are aiming for a career in finance or fashion. Think hard and go work where you want to live.

Availability and competition

9. Are there openings in the field you want?

LinkedIn publishes statistics on the most in-demand jobs worldwide. For a number of years, jobs in IT have been popular, followed by jobs in sales and graduate nurses.

Interesting to note: statistics for the second half of 2021 show that the hotel and restaurant sectors [engl.] posted the highest number of new job vacancies: maintenance personnel, food specialists and kitchen staff all in the top 10. Hospitality and catering labor shortages come as global Covid-19 restrictions have led to a significant reduction in staff . Second, the easing and dropping of restrictions led to a surge in demand for these domains. As the hospitality industry tries to attract new talent, it’s 

Even if you are not considering a career in the hospitality industry, it is important to consider employment opportunities in your future professional field. It is estimated that the travel and tourism industries will contribute $8.6 trillion to the global economy in 2022, creating 330 million jobs. To meditate!

10. What degree of competition in the choice of career path?

A professional career in a competitive field does not necessarily imply running away. Competition, by its nature, can lead to a nice reward, for those who manage to land the job and it is therefore a worthwhile quest. Is the game worth it FOR YOU though? Do a weighing of interests – risk vs reward!

Are you ready to accept rejection and successive failures before reaching the desired level? Are you ready to take as many steps as necessary to achieve this goal, such as higher education, back-to-back internships, work experiences, often lengthy application and interview procedures?

If the answer is yes, you probably have what it takes to make it happen.

It’s your turn!

After answering these 10 questions, we hope that you were able to get your mind straight and that you gained enough height to list your many talents. Remember that boldness and ambition don’t come out of nowhere. They are the result of work on your personality. Be aware of your strengths and values. The future belongs to you!

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