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Looking for a career

When you are trying to choose between different careers, there are lots of options and lots of decisions to make. Whether you are looking for your first job, considering switching career paths, or thinking about starting your own business, getting the right information is vital.

The truth is that many people don't make active career choices, they simply drift into a particular field, and either stay there for the rest of their working life, or at some point drift into another area.

However, if you have the right information, you can make good, active career choices to ensure that you are working in a field that inspires and motivates you. After all, it's much easier to get up on a Monday morning when you are looking forward to work!

If you are just starting out in the world of work, choosing a career can be a daunting proposition. People expect you to make a decision, know what you want, when you've never even tried anything. The secret to getting this right is to get as much information as you can on the different areas that interest you.

Before you can make a decision you need to know the basic information - what skills or aptitudes are required for this work? What training is required? What are the long-term prospects for the industry? What are the typical pay and benefits? Do those who do it enjoy their work?

The more information you can get, the better the chance of getting it right first time. However, the reality is that most people don't spend their life in the same field, especially in the fast changing environment in which we live. Changing career is therefore something that most people will face at one time or another.

If you are considering changing careers, many of the same questions will apply. But it's also important to understand why you are changing career, because this is where you will want to ask the most pressing questions.

Are you looking to change because it seems there are few prospects in your current area? Because you want more money? Because you don't enjoy your work? Whatever is the prime motivator to change, that is where you need to do the most research before you jump into something new.

One option that many people consider at one time or another is starting your own business. It can certainly seem tempting - you are your own boss, you set your own hours, maybe you can make more money - but it is also hard work.

As with all the other areas we've discussed, doing the research is the only way to ensure that you make a decision that you can live with.

Additional information

Start your own business | Changing career | Choosing a career | Networking tips