6 Cardinal Sins in a Career Change

Author: Arvind Thakore

Author: Arvind Thakore

Making a career change or choice is a most critical decision we all go through in our lives. At this crossroad, we at times get mentors who guide us in our decision making process and at times we relay on out own gut and feedback, we gathered through our references. But most often then not, we end up making some cardinal sins in a Career change that we later land up regretting.

1. Do you have it in you

Each one of us has certain capabilities that we are born with. Some of us are good listeners, some great speakers, and some crunch numbers well and some make anything sell. When these competencies glued with our interest and endeared with passion build our capabilities to outperform. Do we have enough of all these four elements in us, decides our growth in what we choose to do? What I am best at and my ability to excel is a question we need to answer. As the movie “3 Idiots” puts it, If the parents of Sachin Tendulkar would have encouraged him to take up singing, would he have been the legend we all see today. Be honest, just check, you have it in you.

2. Do what you love, Love what you do

By definition Work is to do something that involves physical or mental effort, especially as part of a job. If you like what you do and do what you like, the physical and the mental engagements give you stimulus and help you perform better. Better stimulus gives lowered physical and mental resistance and hence causes lesser fatigue, with much better efficiencies and much lesser stress. It’s a sure recipe for success. All great achievers did that inspite all adversaries, because they did what they loved most, it could be for a cause (Sir Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi) or for a mission (Sir Edmund Hillary, Neil Armstrong) or for a will to innovate (William Bill Gates, Steve Jobs) just to name a few.

3. Is there a room at the top

Career is like a plant, it needs to grow. If you put a palm tree in a roofed enclosure it will cease to grow after a point in time, and die. Career is no different. There need to be a room at the top for you to grow and occupy. The view at the top, gives you the encouragement to stretch that extra mile, outperform and carve your path for the growth. You should have room to grow, professionally, intellectually, spiritually and financially. If there is no room, you will stagnate after a point.

4. Who is the lord of your life

Who is the lord of your life; you or your reporting senior? We spend over 45-48 working hours a week at work place that’s around 30% of your week hours in life. Isn’t it important to find out with whom are you spending these hours with? Most people leave their jobs because of incompatible boss. When an organization does a reference check on you on your integrity, performance and other relevant measurement benchmarks, it’s equally important for you to check similar stuff on the other side. No money can compensate the peace at mind and happiness at heart. Choose your lord wisely.

5. Do they have it in them

As it’s important to evaluate yourself, it’s equally important to evaluate the organization you intend to choose your career with. It’s like a dating before you choose to engage. Are there happy faces around? How employee friendly is the work place? What are organizational growth plans? What are the professional and personal credibility, aspiration and reputation of the leader? The questions can be many. Try to get the answer to most of them if not all. You may still go wrong with your decision, but will not be completely off track.

6. All that glitters is not gold and All you hear is not sold (hear between the lines)

Choosing a career is a process. You interact with multiple stakeholders with varied interest. Each with a story close to a fairy tale we have heard growing. Unfortunately, the world around us is not build on your dreams but on the realities of the shifting economic, financial and social priorities of business. All destinations are beautiful when you choose an itinerary for travel, but you choose the destination that you and your family prioritize to spend your time with fun and leisure based on your own priorities. We are so careful and planned when we choose a weeks trip and don’t make similar informed choices when its time to choose a destination we will like to spend a next few years at least, if not a lifetime. Hear between the lines and make your own choices. There are people to sell; you should buy that intends to go well.

A number of factors go into creating what we believe is a rationale career decision. Hard facts like salary and perks apart, I find these six to the guiding stars when it comes to choosing the right career. Follow them to get your shot at fame and superstardom.

Arvind Thakore