Throughout the course of our lives we spend a lot of time working (some may say too much!) However this will seem like no time at all if you are doing something you love. All should aim to discover their ideal occupation; life is too short to spend nine hours a day doing something you hate.
Where to begin?
Obviously, the first step is discovering what your ideal job would be – this is the hard part. The easiest place to start is simply considering what you enjoy doing – chances are there is an occupation to suit you. Above all, it is necessary to consider what job you would be doing if money wasn't a factor, which is often easier said than done. Obviously, if you are simply aiming to earn a massive amount of money there are specific jobs to aim towards; city banker, hedge fund analyst, pop star. And if one of these occupations is your dream, then go for it. But many will be forced to consider whether to work for money or for love of the job. If your priority is the latter then, hopefully you will be lucky and end up with a job which not only makes you happy, but also pays the bills.
Consider your strengths and what job you would be doing if there were no obstacles. Once you have figured out what this is, then the best piece of advice is simply to go for it. However, it is important to acknowledge that it won't be easy.
- There is a lot of competition out there, so you will have to do everything you can to make yourself the perfect candidate.
- It is also essential to realise that certain jobs will require you to relocate; certain jobs cannot be done properly or at all outside of London, for example, those who hope to secure a highflying career in investment banking will find more opportunities in the capital.
- More exotic positions will require applicants to be prepared for a lot of travelling, such as an air hostess, pilot or a member of the armed forces.
- Get work experience. This is essential; work experience proves that you are serious about the job in question and it will provide you with the opportunity to learn vital skills. It may also grant you valuable contacts who will keep you updated with vacancies and links to other people who may be able to help you. In an ideal situation, you may make such a good impression that they will keep you in mind when a vacancy arrives; companies occasionally hire interns and those who have completed work experience placements as they have had the opportunity to observe how they fit in at the workplace.
- Gain the relevant qualifications. Once you have decided on your dream job, there may be certain courses you need to complete before hoping to be considered for a permanent position. This may involve night classes, short courses or even completing a degree. But, if you are determined to enter the profession of your dreams, you will be able to find ways to complete such programmes of study. Part time learning and internet courses are now widely available and there is often funding available for those who cannot afford tuition fees.
Once you have the necessary skills and experience you just need to find someone to give you a job. The following sources are pivotal points of exploration for those searching for a position:
- Newspapers. Local papers are a good source of jobs, but this of course depends on where you want to work. If you are willing to work anywhere then your research will have to be much more extensive. However, if you are hoping to get a job in a specific location then there are only so many papers you will able to check. Those aiming to find employment in London should check the national newspapers; the Guardian and The Times are usually good sources.
- The Internet. Nowadays it is much easier to research available positions in the hope of finding the perfect availability. Nationwide websites for companies such as Myjobsearch.com contain a wealth of current vacancies from around the country. All you have to do is search for the occupation you hope to secure and then enjoy applying for all the jobs that take your fancy. If you have a specific company in mind then it is worth keeping an eye on their website, as many organisations will advertise through this medium. Other sites worth trying are those specifically designed for the occupation you favour; these will often contain helpful hints as well as vacancies. Graduates should explore their university careers centre website as well as these are often extremely helpful.
- Job centre. Such organisations boast a multitude of resources designed to assist those searching for jobs. Often visitors will be able to use the internet for free, as well as receive valuable advice relating to applications and interviews.
- Speculative applications. If you are hoping to secure a specific post in a certain organisation then it is worth sending in your CV even if they are not presently advertising for staff. Although they may not be able to offer you something immediately, they may keep your CV in mind if a position arises in the future.
- Keep your ear to the ground. Make it known that you are looking for a specific job; many will remember you and choose to inform you if they hear of a suitable position which becomes available.
All should be aware that the road to securing your perfect job is not simple. It will take time and most will discover that they are forced to start at the bottom of the ladder and then work their way up. The most important part is securing a position at the bottom of the ladder; once this has been achieved applicants can rest assured in the knowledge that they are on their way to achieving their goal.