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What made you choose the career your in? #Career-choice

Hello,
I am 20 years old. I'm trying to figure out all the information I can about different careers that I find fascinating. So when I decide which career I would like to enter I will enjoy it. #career-choice

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Rachel’s Answer

I am a UX Designer and I think I can speak for many UXers when I say that it was not my first choice ONLY because I was unaware of the field! UX Design is not yet globally known but it's getting there. Essentially we solve mostly digital problems by way of research, ideation, design and prototyping. It's such a fun industry because daily tasks change often depending on where you are in the UX process.

Before I was a UX Designer, I freelanced Graphic Design for 5 years. I didn't love it. I loved creating but felt like the clientele of freelance graphic design burnt me out a bit. Retrospectively, I can say UX design is based on research and that may be what graphic design was lacking for me - data and facts.

Anyways, after that I learned to code. Mostly front-end frameworks and I went to college for software engineering. I graduated, got a software job and, again, didn't love it. Long story short, I was recommended UX Design since it was a combination of both of those fields + psychology. And here I am! Many years and many decisions later but I don't regret any of it.

Rachel recommends the following next steps:

There are SO many types of careers out there. What do you truly enjoy? In your free time, is there something you're always drawn to? Is there a cause you're passionate about?
If there is, look at WHY you're drawn to it. You can usually pull up a variety of career paths when you answer "why." For instance, you may love knitting and the "why" may be the attention to detail or the repetitive nature of the task.
If you think you may be onto something, reach out to a professional in the field whether on LinkedIn or another outlet. Ask them about their daily tasks and what it takes to sit in their position.
Leave that conversation with a better idea of either next steps or a different career path.
Remind yourself that it it OKAY to not know what you want to do :) It's truly a lifelong journey.
Thank you comment icon Thanks for the feedback. Jasmine
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Marcelo’s Answer

I chose a career in the financial industry early on, at the age of 13. I always loved watching programs about economics and finance, and I used to "steal" the magazines and newspapers that my father subscribed to read the economics and finance section. Then, when I was 14 years old, I wrote a letter (that's right, a letter on paper, at that time personal computers were rare and very expensive) to the local stock exchange asking for materials and book recommendations about the stock market. The natural consequence was the option to go to college for a degree in Economics. Before its conclusion, I was already working in a commercial bank; there, I had the opportunity to direct my career in investments.
From my personal experience, I can say that choosing to follow some area or theme that you feel you have an affinity and interest in researching and understanding would be one of the best ways to seek professional fulfillment in your life!
Thank you comment icon Thank you for your answer. Jasmine
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Marina’s Answer

Not everyone knows what career they're interested in or will be passionate about throughout school, or even when they start work. I chose to work in procurement, which is essentially strategic purchasing on behalf of a company, because I really enjoyed my internship in the field. I initially applied for the internship because the application said procurement involves a lot of negotiating and competitive bidding, and I thought I would enjoy that due to my background in and love for Debate.

My advice, if you are stuck, is to think of extracurriculars, clubs, and even hobbies and try to extract the soft skills in each that you enjoyed. I'm an avid reader of both fiction and non-fiction, so I figured I would enjoy a career where I would be analyzing qualitative information. I also love trivia nights, escape rooms, and other similar activities because I am a competitive spirit who likes being able to come up with answers and solve puzzles (aka solutions), so I thought I would like a career in a competitive environment that allows me to be a decision-maker.

I majored in finance and could have easily had a career in investment banking or a more traditional finance role, but I felt it wasn't the right fit for me. I am still using a lot of the principles I learned in finance, but I'm doing it in an environment that is more suited to my soft interests.

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Chantelle’s Answer

I chose my career path (criminal psychology) because I grew up in a household of law enforcement officers, and I was always interested in the way criminal minds work from a psychological perspective. I now dedicate my research to mass gun violence.
Thank you comment icon Thanks for the feedback. Jasmine
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Samantha’s Answer

How I chose my career is that I always enjoyed cooking and entertaining since I was 3. Ive always loved cooking shows and always wanted to learn how they did things.
Thank you comment icon Thanks for the feedback. Jasmine
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Gloria’s Answer

Hi Jasmine,

It took me a while to find the career that I have now, but the core of my career goes back to my childhood. I have always loved telling stories and writing since I knew how to do it. The challenge was to find a way to use my storytelling in what my parents would consider a real job. That was not easy. I ended up taking jobs that I could get and then worked through different roles in order to find my place. That took several years. And yet 20 years later, I do a variation of the first time that I was able to use my story telling skills. I use it now to tell people about how to do their jobs by writing training courses.

So I would say - figure out what you love to do or what talents you have right now. Look up jobs that need those skills. Figure out if you would want to use that talent all day long. You should think about skills that are not always tangible, such as leadership skills, ability to talk to groups of people, or an ability to communicate well (like teaching people what you know).

Gloria
Thank you comment icon Thank you for your response. Jasmine
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Hariharan’s Answer

I chose my career path based on where I felt my interests took me naturally. I was interested in Math and physics , loved technology but always wanted to use it in perspective of real world. I then started gaining interest in learning about business and processes and that lead me to build interest integrating these 2 aspects and starting thinking of a carrier in supply chain , operations and technology management . My 3 pieces of advice would be , identify and differentiate your Passions v/s hobby , don't chase money and most importantly do what you love and love what you do .
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Amanda’s Answer

Hi Jasmine!

I think it is perfectly okay to not have a perfect sense of direction at 20. At 21, I am still figuring it out too, and it can be fun to explore different areas of interest! I found university classes to be helpful in learning what I could potentially like to do, and a public health class I took freshman year has led me toward a career in healthcare. However, that is such a broad industry, and I'm hoping a rotational program at a corporate company will help me learn more about what I want to do. I think rotational programs are great, as they allow you to try out multiple careers in a relatively short time span at one company. I would say it is important to stay open and say 'yes' to new opportunities, even if they seem intimidating. New experiences will allow you to grow, learn more about yourself and what you want to do in the future!
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much. Jasmine
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Mike’s Answer

Hello Jasmine! Funny enough I'm 32 and just found my career only 6 and half years ago. I worked retail for years and took a chance on a start up warehousing/e-commerce company. I absolutely fell in love with it and continued improving my skill sets and leadership skills. It is 100% ok not to know what you want to do or what career you want to dive into. Be open to new experiences and opportunities and you might just find the career you are passionate about was something that never crossed your mind before.
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Fred’s Answer

When I was in college, I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up. So, I wound up majoring in Business Administration (w/a concentration in Finance). At the time, my rationale was that if I learned "the language of business," it could be applied broadly across industries and companies (i.e. it would provide me with the most options upon graduation).

I got lucky in that I stumbled into a career (and organization) that I really enjoy working for. But, if I could do it all over again ... I'd actually take a page out of YOUR playbook and focus on what FASCINATES me - instead of hedging my bets. Which topic flies by because you enjoy learning about it, talking about it, and solving problems? Likely, this is something you're already good at.

People talk about "finding their passion" but I wasn't tall enough for the NBA. So, I tend to agree with Mark Cuban, who said: “Passion isn’t what you need to focus on,” he says. “If you put in enough time you get really good. And nobody quits anything they’re good at, because it’s fun to be good, to be the best [at something].” If you don't know what makes you stand out, it can be helpful to discuss w/family & close friends - you might be missing something obvious.

Also, you can't go wrong with Warren Buffet advice: https://speakola.com/corp/warren-buffett-university-of-georgia-2001

Good luck!
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