Career Resources

Happy Is Not Just About Doing What You Love: Creating a Career Path

January 12, 2015 Career Resources

“Do what you love” has become such a commonly repeated ideal, we rarely question it. Do you find yourself chasing the perfect job or client without thinking what comes next? I think a lot of people (myself included) tend to think if we find that one amazing, meaningful yet well-paid position, everything will magically fall into place. Unfortunately that’s rarely the case. Annette Richmond, MA explores beyond finding a job you love.

Working at something you love doesn’t necessarily lead to job satisfaction. You need to have a career track too. It seems that people who have a defined career path at work are more satisfied than those who don’t, according to a survey by Accountemps.

In fact 54 percent of respondents said that having a clear idea of how to get ahead – knowing their career path – was very important, 31 percent said it was at least somewhat important, while only 14 percent said they didn’t care. People want to know what’s next and how to get there.

If you’re dissatisfied at the office you need to take some of the responsibility as well. Start by exploring your options. If possible, schedule time to talk to your manager about your potential to grow within the company. Ask if there are any new projects that you can take on to expand your skill set. Talk to him or her about your strengths and weaknesses. Find out if you need additional development and/or education to move ahead.

Don’t stop with your boss. Meet with human resources to find out what opportunities may be available for employees. For example, you company may have a formal mentorship program or offer tuition reimbursement. If they have a mentorship program enroll, if not take steps to find a mentor, or better yet a sponsor, on your own. Begin by networking with key players both inside and outside of your company who may be able to offer you guidance.

It’s certainly helpful if your employer can help develop a roadmap. But, in the end, it’s up to you to take responsibility for your own career.

Article originally posted here.

While Annette’s article addresses people working in companies, it isn’t hard to extrapolate her findings for those of us freelancing or running a business. Don’t just think about your next sale or project, but where that project is going to take you, the direction you ultimately want to build your business to go and how you want to grow personally. It might take longer than you’d like and there might still be some flailing and wrong turns, but seeing the long-term picture will ultimately create more satisfying experience.


Annette Richmond, MA is a Multifaceted Resume Writer and Executive Editor of Having changed careers several times, including working as a writer, recruiter and vocational counselor, she has a unique perspective on career management. She contributes career-related articles to various other sites including TalentCulture, ForbesWoman and LinkedIn. For information on working with her visit her webpage.