Finding a Dream Job (Part 4)

Previously, I demonstrated a few ways to go about finding yourself, discovering your personality type, and brainstorming upon your talents and interests.  In this article, I will demonstrate how we can use this information to find a dream job.  Please be aware that, while that one job out there might be pure, heavenly bliss, most people have an array of dream jobs, any one of which might be quite enjoyable, but most come with some level of responsibility that just seems to take longer than the rest of the job.  No job is completely perfect.  Many are simply enjoyable.

Since writing my previous articles, I have discovered a few additional websites.  A quick search on Google for “Myers-Briggs personality test” and “career test” will provide a few places to start.  The page at CareerTest.net has a personality type test (68 questions) as well as career path suggestions based upon the results of the personality test.  Additionally, the CareerBuilder Color Career Test seems to work pretty well.  For the purpose of this article, I will use myself as an example.  I am generally middle-of-the-road on my personality type, but due to minor discrepancies in balance, my personality type code is INTP.  On the personality type description page, you can review some of the careers that fit well with your personality type.

For myself, I was given a suggestion with several options: strategic planner, writer, staff development, lawyer, architect, software engineer, financial analyst, college professor, photographer, logician, artist, systems analyst, neurologist, physicist, psychologist, R&D specialist, computer programmer, database manager, chemist, biologist, and investor.  It is worth noting that many of these career paths were chosen because of my nature to prefer solitude, while others were chosen for my technical nature.  Immediately, I can identify at least three choices that I have, at some point in my life, considered pursuing.  Currently, I am a computer programming making a move toward software engineering.  While in high school, I thought of studying psychology.  I mentioned in my first post that I found an interest in drawing.  Of everything on the list above, art was my first love.  Today, I have found a nice balance between art and computers.  With additional brainstorming, I might find other combinations that make use of at least three of my interests.

After considering each of the options listed above, I can remove those that aren’t quite “up my alley”, leaving me with just a few options: writer, architect, photographer, artist, and computer programmer.  Note that I have removed some interests from this list that I might actually have kept.  For the purpose of this article, I have tried to keep the list short.  Taking the above fields, I can see that a good career path for me might be one that include the work of an architect, the creativity of an artist, and the occasional need for computer programming or scripting.  First, I want to clarify that an architect is someone who is responsible for the design and oversight of construction.  The object of construction is debatable, if not moot for this purpose.  Without going into detail about the brainstorming session, I have concluded that the following career paths would make reasonable approximations to my dream job: artistic architect, a comic book writer and artist, a fiction author who also provides his own art, or a software developer who develops any software or websites that might be used by any of the professionals from the original list.

Once you have combined your interests and talents, you will be able to start finding niches in various jobs.  All that is left is to begin your career search and market yourself.  If you must make a career transition, you might want to keep a couple of things in mind.  When changing careers, it is important that you understand your weaknesses.  If you are 30 years old or older, then you may very well be competing against people who are younger.  This might make it difficult to hire someone who is entering into a career as a beginner.  The next thing to keep in mind is that anything you have done counts as experience.  When I was first hired into a technology field, I had no professional experience.  Since I had experience developing custom programs and small websites for individuals, I had experience that I was able to claim.  This wasn’t entirely apparent to me at first, but as I began moving up in my career, I began to realize that this freelance experience was enough to make the difference between not getting a promotion due to inexperience and being promoted due to experience.

As you being planning to occupy this ideal job, you must market yourself.  If you are pursuing a job that involves small, manageable output, such as websites, paper output, photographs, etc., then I would highly recommend creating a portfolio.  Portfolios are excellent tools to help show off your abilities to an interviewer.  You might lack excellent communication skills.  Without a portfolio, communication can be a deal-breaker.  With a good portfolio, communication might take a back seat if the job for which you are interviewing relies heavily upon work output rather than verbal communication.

Anyone currently enrolled into a technical degree program is probably familiar with creating a portfolio.  For those who aren’t familiar or might need a refresher, I will address making a portfolio in my next article.

References

Personality Type Descriptions – CareerTest.net. Retrieved Sep. 5, 2010 from Website: http://www.careertest.net/types/descriptions/index.htm

Career Test – CareerTest.net. Retrieved Sep. 5, 2010 from Website: http://www.careertest.net

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