A successful career is a relative term.
Spoiler Alert: I know that.
‘Career success,’ or ‘a successful career’ for many people means many things. For some, it will be finding happiness in what they do; for some, it will be doing something that will make them happy. For few, it will be about satisfaction or avoiding a tragedy. And, for others, it will be about connecting what they learned in schools/colleges to a job they are doing. For some, it is a means to pay bills and fulfilling commitments and bank loans or avoid credit card dues. Some of us even may connect eternal well-being to a job to mean career success. For a few of us, career success is a funding plan for our ‘luxury-glossy’ lifestyle.
For many, career success is not defined yet. For some, they do not want to limit. They like it vague and in the clouds.
So I will stick with what I put in the intro, ‘Career success is a relative term, and it can mean many things to many people.’
Now let’s identify three essential steps a person undergoes or a person has to undergo to have a successful career. Assuming career here means life through jobs, and success means growth (material growth, of course).
Step 1: Getting Education / Earning Skills:
School days and college semesters we use to gain these valuable assets. ‘Knowledge of what’ alone will not do education, Knowledge of how and why is essential. Building a proper skill set during your academic years is a challenge too. Never miss it.
Step 2: Getting ‘The Job’ (not ‘A Job’):
Getting ‘A Job’ is more straightforward. But identifying ‘The Job’ suitable to your skillset, interest, utilizing your talent and aptitude, is the real task. Never settle in ‘A Job.’ Even if you are forced to cave in, make it a temporary stop towards your long-term marathon race.
Step 3: Growing Through The Job (in terms of Money / Reputation / Responsibility, not just AGE!):
Yes, there are many jobs in the market offered by employers who will help you to add age to your bio-data and will make you ‘salary-addict’ and ‘vulnerable.’ These jobs will not add value. Instead, they will make you redundant and ultimately a great dinosaur. Generations later, some may have to dig and arrange the bones to really understand what you were up to.
It is often mistaken or misunderstood and repeated innumerable times by our parents, neighbors, family, teachers, and institutions that a promising career means a great scorecard in the school/college exams. This chains our kids in step 1 and us. We must also facilitate and empower our children/us to climb the second step of getting ‘The Job.’ The Job here means a job in line with your long-term vision and career dream fulfillment. It is a job that will take care of you if you take care of them. A job for a company/organization which considers you and your strength for mutual benefit. A job that will value your qualities and where you find your strength paying off in your growth. This brings us to our third step – Growing Through ‘The Job.’ If you manage to get ‘The Job’ in ‘The Company,’ you will for sure find your oxygen and live quite successfully. Even if the company finds it difficult to take you along during its most dreadful days, at least it will give you enough of the ‘expertise’ by which you can ‘survive’ and seek the next better opportunity.
What if you were/are unsuccessful in getting into all three steps? Remember how we started, career success is a relative term, and it can mean many things.
You just mean what becomes convenient to you!