Have you ever noticed how much time, focused energy, and money goes in to preparing to take the SAT, ACT or a re-test to get a better score? So much of it is driven by the desire to have qualifying scores for a specific university or college of choice. Imagine the hours invested in AP or IB courses for the purpose of positioning one’s self for that perfect college. In making the selection to take a prep course for these tests, students and parents use their network of other students and parents to get recommendations for individual tutors or organizations. They will spend countless hours to go on-line and search options. So much effort and resource is spent on this one piece of preparing for college and the bigger picture of a career direction becomes a second priority or maybe third or fourth.
With the national average being six years to get a four year degree, the indicators point to students not being prepared to make a decision about their career direction and therefore the result is greater use of personal resources or student loans and lost earning potential. That’s not to say that students can’t change their mind about a career major once they are in college, but they can make informed decisions that use both their time and their resources wisely and reduce the potential of increased time to get a bachelors degree and increase the likelihood that they will be happy with their career choice.
Making informed decisions means collecting the best possible information in multiple directions. In order to do that with a career decision, the information needs to include personal interests, an assessment of values, an inventory of skills and a quantified measure of natural abilities. If there are influencing factors like family legacies or expectations, those need to be addressed as well.
Adults in the workforce or preparing to return to work should also pay attention to these factors. Making decisions about career changes whether it is a promotion opportunity or a totally new direction should be carefully and strategically structured. Too often adults stay in a career field they discover to be less than satisfying and not rewarding financially or personally. Yet they are paralyzed to make a move and often due to lack of information. According to an Unknown Author, “Indecision becomes decision with time.”
Don’t be paralyzed by indecision. Collect the information, assess your situation and goals, and if you need assistance, send me an email. I can get you going in the right direction!