Choosing a Career

In the 18th century a man when seeking work usually followed the occupation of his father. Today a young man or woman has more freedom to choose a career. And at a later date a person can change that choice.

From an individual perspective, every man or woman is encouraged to find a job that she enjoys or loves.

Confucius (551-479 BC) said: “Choose a job you love and will never have to work a day in your life”.

Ben S. Bernake at Princeton University on June 2, 2013 said: “A career decision based only on money and not on love of the work or a desire to make a difference is a recipe for unhappiness”.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights states: “Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment ….. “.

Some young persons are fortunate in knowing what they want to work at from an early age. Others find their niche at a later date. And some others unfortunately may never find a job that they like.

Are you searching for a job? Consider two books by Sir Kenneth Robinson. He wrote The Element (2009) and later he wrote Finding your Element (2013). The books offer advice, techniques and resources for anyone who is searching for a job that might lead to a full life. Robinson states that “Finding your Element is vital to understanding who you are what you are capable of being and doing with your life”. Being in your Element is more than doing things you are good at. To be in your Element you have to love your work too.

From an overall perspective, one might expect chaos arising out of the millions of career choices being made every day. Rather than chaos the labour market seems to create jobs for an increasing percentage of the working-age population in Canada. Of persons aged 15 to 64 the percentage of working-age people with jobs in Canada in 2010 was 71% (Source: Statistics Canada). Fifty years ago that percentage was approx. 50%. This trend is a testament to the job-creating power of the Canadian economy. Also the range of choice seems to be expanding for the job seeker.

The experience of myself and of many senior friends is that a working career can be full of surprises and will tend to be unpredictable. So if you are a young person seeking employment prepare for an adventure.

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