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Career & Job - Are these two different?

By SiliconIndia   |   Friday, 16 July 2010, 07:43 Hrs
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As the title of this article suggests, are these two - Career & Job - different?

I have observed that many people still have a traditional & a typical mindset. As soon they complete their education, majority of them hunt for a job based on the parameters like good earning potential, growth in terms of promotion, type & potential of the industry, etc. Once they bag a job which satisfies all those parameters, the next most important aspiration they have is to get promotion or more money (salary rise) in the same organisation or with another. I could also hear someone say that, career growth can be attained only by two ways - one, by changing jobs after a certain period and second, by promotion in the current organisation. This is very much true in a way. And these two ways are somewhat also seen as a definite path to great & successful careers.

But is this really so and so simple? If this was the case, then everybody would and could have managed to have highly successful careers in their life.

I, as an education consultant, get to see that almost all consider 'career' and 'job' as same and use those two terms, inter-changeably. But that is not the same and it should not be done that way. It is fact that we all should accept that having done a wonderful job may not necessarily mean that the person has been having a wonderful career, however a person having a wonderful career may also or may not mean that the person has been having a wonderful job.

Career and Job are two different things, where a Career is wholistic and a Job is narrow in nature.
Career growth cannot be depicted through a graph showing a person's qualitative movement, whereas job growth can be depicted through a graph showing a person's quantitative movement like salary figures, upward change of designation in organisation, tenure of service, etc. We need to understand that a job is a step towards reaching the goal and that goal is nothing but, 'Career'.
We should aim to have a successful career and not just a successful job. It's like making our life count and not just years count.

So what can be done to reach this goal called 'Career'?

Firstly, we need to understand & identify one's own potential & strengths. SWOT analysis will help in this. The gaps which we will then identify can be filled up, may be by doing some relevant training programmes / courses, some bit of self grooming, confidence building, attitude correction, etc. which will help us get equipped with the required skill-sets to launch ourselves into the career of our choice.
Secondly, we need to understand and accept the reality that being employable is different and having qualifications for an employment is different. It may happen that having excellent qualifications may not land us in a job and there may be cases, that without much qualification, we may bag a great job. Having relevant qualifications with required skill-sets is most important factor for being employable in the industry. Skill-sets not only include technical skills but also inter-personal skills, behavioral skills, leadership, being team player skill, people management skills, learning skills and the most important, attitude.

Thirdly, construct our own definition of 'Success' not dominated or based upon worlds', since that will give you a direction to your career.

All these factors are vital for making a successful career, much more than a successful job.
To close upon I would like to quote the Management Thinker Peter Drucker. He once said that "Indian working women are the best managers in the world".

I would like to propose that a housewife can also have a wonderful & successful career since doing a job of a 'housewife' has both - qualitative as well as quantitative growth projectory. A housewife's job is no lesser than a normal job, since it has scope to apply and implement almost all management strategies in the world and may be doing that can give the housewife the satisfaction of having a successful career.

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