CAREER FOCUS

It is pertinent for every student to know what career is and how it’s choice  can affect their future. Our focus here is to highlight from time to time various careers and features of each course of study and the career pursuit in its line.

If you keep a track with us here you are sure to read about successful people in your field of interest.

 

DEFINITION

The word career is defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as a person‘s “course or progress through life (or a distinct portion of life)”. In this definition career is understood to relate to a range of aspects of an individual’s life, learning and work. Career is also frequently understood to relate to the working aspects of an individual’s life e.g. as in career woman. A third way in which the term career is used to describe an occupation or a profession that usually involves special training or formal education, and is considered to be a person’s lifework. In this case “a career” is seen as a sequence of related jobs usually pursued within a single industry or sector e.g. “a career in education” or “a career in the building trade”.

According to Behling and others, an individual’s decision to join a firm may depend on any of the three factors viz. objective factor, subjective factor and critical contact.[6]

  • Objective factor theory assumes that the applicants are rational. The choice, therefore, is exercised after an objective assessment of the tangible benefits of the job. Factors may include the salary, other benefits, location, opportunities for career advancement, etc.
  • Subjective factor theory suggests that decision making is dominated by social and psychological factors. The status of the job, reputation of the organization and other similar factors plays an important role.
  • Critical contact theory advances the idea that a candidate’s observations while interacting with the organization plays a vital role in decision making. For example, how the recruiter keeps in touch with the candidate, the promptness of response and similar factors are important. This theory is more valid with experienced professionals.

Career success

Career success is a term used frequently in academic and popular writing about career. It refers to the extent and ways in which an individual can be described as successful in his or her working life so far.[11]

Traditionally, career success has often been thought of in terms of earnings and/or status within an occupation or organisation. This can be expressed either in absolute terms (e.g. the amount a person earns) or in relative terms (e.g. the amount a person earns compared with their starting salary). Earnings and status are examples of objective criteria of success, where “objective” means that they can be factually verified, and are not purely a matter of opinion.

Many observers argue that careers are less predictable than they once were, due to the fast pace of economic and technological change.[12] This means that career management is more obviously the responsibility of the individual rather than his or her employing organisation, because a “job for life” is a thing of the past. This has put more emphasis on subjective criteria of career success.[13] These include job satisfaction, career satisfaction, work-life balance, a sense of personal achievement, and attaining work that is consistent with one’s personal values. A person’s assessment of his or her career success is likely to be influenced by social comparisons, such as how well family members, friends, or contemporaries at school or college have done.[14]

The amount and type of career success a person achieves is affected by several forms of career capital.[15] These include social capital (the extent and depth of personal contacts a person can draw upon), human capital (demonstrable abilities, experiences and qualifications), economic capital (money and other material resources which permit access to career-related resources), and cultural capital (having skills, attitudes or general know-how to operate effectively in a particular social context).[16]

Career support

There are a range of different educational, counseling, and human resource management interventions that can support individuals to develop and manage their careers. Career support is commonly offered while people are in education, when they are transitioning to the labour market, when they are changing career, during periods of unemployment, and during transition to retirement. Support may be offered by career professionals, other professionals or by non-professionals such as family and friends. Professional career support is sometimes known as “career guidance” as in the OECD definition of career guidance:

The activities may take place on an individual or group basis, and may be face-to-face or at a distance (including helplines and web-based services). They include career information provision (in print, ICT-based and other forms), assessment and self-assessment tools, counselling interviews, career education programmes (to help individuals develop their self-awareness, opportunity awareness, and career management skills), taster programmes (to sample options before choosing them), work search programmes, and transition services.” curled from https:en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Career