7 Tips to Discover your Career Path

If you are a teenager, you may be stumped when people all around ask you about your career. Sadly, no one tells you how to make a career choice. The real solution to career discovery, then, is to keep exploring through real world learning – where you learn by doing, instead of just reading about it in textbooks. It is a crucial step to long-term life success. It can help you go beyond test scores and lead you to a path of self-discovery.

Here’s how you can understand your true career calling with the help of real world learning:

Figure out what you’re looking for

Before you find a career that is good for you, you must understand yourself and the things that you excel at. Some studies have shown that the top 10% of successful people do about 50% of the work. Here’s something to think about:

  • Research multiple paths to see what interests you
  • Find out your strengths to align them with your choices

Don’t just limit yourself to passion

Following your passion is excellent. But it would help if you equally focus on the ultimate impact of your effort. About 75% of respondents to a survey in America said they had changed their career at least once, and approximately 33% thinking of changing yet again. So, the right fit is a must.

Let your passion guide you, but don’t forget to put in the hard work. Figure out if you’re interested in a particular area enough to pursue it long-term. Moreover, you can find out more about your interest by participating in activities or events related to it.

Look for overlaps

What you know, what a company expects, and what you want to achieve may differ, but the connection between the three should be found. This is how you find your perfect way to work.

Think about your interests, abilities, and learn how to interpret this instead of looking for a job. Look back at past experiences to guide you towards your future. What did you like to do in the past? What did you not like about it?

You will see what work you have to do by knowing your values, passions, and abilities. And being sensitive to these factors means that you can take a closer look at technologies that require 21st-century skills.

Shortlist your choices

You can’t try it all. It can work better if you reduce it to a minimum number of possibilities. So, measure up which of your talents and abilities can actually make fit within career paths. And, just make a list of the pros and cons and shorten it down to things that really matter to you.

Network your way to career discovery

When you are actively looking for a new career or trying to figure out which way to go, it’s a great way to get your feet in the water and seek help from those already in it.

When you meet more people, you can gain more insight into how they work, why they love their work. And mentoring is crucial if you are looking for a job. Surveys reveal that around 85% of the jobs are networked!

Seek professional internships

Did you know what a veterinarian does all day? There is no better way to learn a job than to spend a day shadowing someone. Even universities help you plan to visit a professional body as long as you follow the rules.

For example, if you want to do an internship with a family friend or neighbour in their office, they will be asking you to contact the HR department in advance for authorization. (This inquiry can be initiated on your behalf by the friend or neighbour.) This will, in turn, increase your exposure to the industry.

Hold on to what inspires you

This is an obvious step: everyone wants to enjoy their work and appreciate it. If you are afraid to talk about work, it is the most significant sign that you are on the wrong path. While passion is not the only way to fulfil your mission, most people would say that it is still important, not least because passion keeps you going through difficult times.

The road to career discovery is not a straight path, but it is filled with great learnings and personal growth. Happy exploring!

Preparing Learners for the Future of Work

The Future of Work is evolving rapidly and young learners will need to equip themselves with life skills that go beyond academic learning.

‘What do you want to do in life when you complete school?’ A majority of learners across the world are unsure of how to answer this question.

While schools stress over SAT scores and good grades, the foundations to prepare them for the real world are missing.

According to a report, 85% of the jobs that will exist in 2030 haven’t even been invented yet. 

There’s another reality to think about – our current school learners will be the ones who will create many of these jobs. 

In a rapidly evolving work landscape, it is essential for them to take charge and equip themselves with life skills that will make them future-ready. But are they up for the challenge?

Learning for the Future

A publication by Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development says that young learners are in fact studying more than their parents and grandparents did, and yet when it comes to work, they struggle to enter the job market.

Saurabh Saxena, the founder of Uable, a real-world learning ecosystem for 13-18-year-olds, says we need to do more to prepare them. “The future of work is very dynamic. It demands multiple skills in every role and the traditional teaching techniques are not enough to fill the gap.”

The next generation of citizens will require not just strong academic skills, but also important future-ready skills such as leadership, empathy, curiosity, creativity, imagination, and resilience, among many others to succeed in life.

Also, if they are to create jobs and bring more innovations to the world, it’s important for them to develop a sense of purpose and stay connected with it. 

Finding a Calling

So what is preventing learners from discovering what they truly want to do in life?

“A number of reasons – they are not aware of their passion, they are not taught to take risks in life, they are not asking for help and most importantly, they do not know what career prospects they can pursue,” says Saurabh.

In short, they cannot be what they cannot see. 

A survey says that a staggering 93% of students are aware of only 7 mainstream career options in India as compared to over 250 different types of job options available in the market.

Another study done in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States that followed groups of young learners from childhood to adulthood, showed that the ones who combined part-time employment with full-time education fared better in their school-to-work transitions.

“Only when learners are exposed to the real-world environment, they discover their passion. But it is not necessary to get in the job market even before completing education to do this. What they need is real-world learning,” says Saurabh. 

The Age of Awareness

The good news is that they are eager to learn.

Scholars Seemiller and Grace say that ‘Generation Z’ considers itself thoughtful, open-minded, and more socially aware. It welcomes hands-on learning opportunities that help them learn in more engaging and contextual ways.

Uable is bridging this gap by giving them a flavor of the future of work that awaits them through live peer and expert interactions in the core domains of Entrepreneurship, STEM, Communication, Design, and Humanities.

Uable inspires each learner to find their calling when it comes to the future of work. Many of them are already in the process of discovery, where they have a fair idea of what they want to do in life. But there are many more still figuring out. It encourages each one of them to immerse themselves in real-world learning experiences to acquire tools that will help them prepare for the future.

“So many of us struggle throughout our lives to find our “Ikigai”, a sweet spot where you pursue something that you are good at, that you love to do, that the world needs, and something that you can be paid enough for. At Uable, each learner has the opportunity to discover all these elements early on in their life,” he adds.