How Many People Have Made the Wrong Career Path Choice?

I came across an interesting article in the Globe and Mail’s Globe Careers section on Wednesday June 10, 2009, entitled “Did You Make the Right Career Choice” by Christine Wong.  The article not only tells the career story of a man who changed his career path, but it also gives some interesting statistics.  The article cited a survey of 11,000 Canadians, conducted by Kelly Services, that found that 10 – 12% of people surveyed felt that they chose the wrong career path and an additional 24% of people were not sure if they had made the right career field choice.

This is not only an issue in Canada, but also throughout the world.  In fact, the article cites another survey of 115,000 people from 33 countries that states that up to 50% of people surveyed felt that they picked the wrong career path. 

The reasons for these wrong choices are many and vary person to person.  For those who have already embarked on their career paths, it is important for them to recognize when and if they are on the wrong path and then do something about it.  For those who have not yet started the working part of their career path, the article offers some suggestions that may help young people start out on the right path.  Young people could: 1) take a wider variety of courses on high school and college to get a broader exposure to different fields, 2) travel, 3) complete self assessments, 4) make decisions based on their interests and passion, and not on their parents interests, and 5) volunteer to get exposure to different fields.

These statistics are evidence that many people struggle with the issue of finding themselves traveling along the wrong career path for a variety of reasons.  If you are one of these people, please share your story.  Maybe you could help to inspire someone else in a similar position.

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One Response to How Many People Have Made the Wrong Career Path Choice?

  1. Janice Pence says:

    I’ve worked in HR for years. So many times I interview people who are miserable in their job. It shows on their face, in their emotions. Sometimes we get into a comfortable career that pays well and we stick with it out of habit. Then in 10 – 15 years you wake up miserable.

    I love hiring people who are passionate about their job. They perform better and stay with the company longer. I’ve researched the 16 Myers Briggs Types and find some comfort in selecting employees that match the career.

    Does anyone have experience with another tool besides the MBTI?

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