Massey University CareerplaNZ

Career and student learning issues brought to you by Massey University’s Careers Service – New Zealand

Questions, questions

Posted by John Ross on February 19, 2009

The focus of today’s post is on some of the questions you should ask yourself when looking at career choice.  In writing this I do realise that in today’s job market getting a job – any job – may well be your number one priority.  However, if you can its worth spending time on considering your answers to the questions that follow:

What size of organisation do you want to work for – small, medium or large?  Whilst it’s tempting for the new graduate to look first (and possibly only) at traditional graduate recruitment programmes, the truth is that most NZ graduates will work for small organisations – the vast bulk of the nation’s employers.  In a small organisation your contributions will explicitly show and count.  You may have a higher level of influence – and earlier – than you would if you worked in a large enterprise where there’s a possibility that you’ll feel like ‘a small cog in a big machine’.  On the other hand, bigger employers may – and it is a may – offer greater job security; scope for promotion; career development opportunities and ‘fringe’ benefits.

What sector(s) appeal to you?  How much do you know about them and about the opportunities that they have?  If you’re attracted to a sector that’s contracting, how easy might it be for you to move into a different one?

A final decision on this should be made from as informed a position as possible.  For example, do you have – or could you attain – the qualifications needed?  Do you have – or could you attain – any relevant work experience required? Is it possible to find work experience or work shadowing that would give you a taste of the role?  How easy might it be to find people working in the role that you could contact for information – they’re likely to be able to offer you a realistic view of the job? 

Last, but of course not least, what job could you do?  No-one but you can make this decision but it is vital that you talk to people – friends; family; colleagues; careers professionals; relevant professional bodies; human resources departments; other contacts etc.

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