Exploring all the options

Sep 30 2015 Published by under Decisions, industry, life in the office

When I was in academia there was more or less one path: from grad student to post-doc to getting your own group and eventually becoming a tenured professor. Now that I'm a scientist in industry, there's what feels like an infinite number of options and where I am it's really encouraged to figure out what your path will be and to take steps to advance on your path. When work was kind of quiet over the summer, I realized that I missed knowing what my ultimate goal would be. I missed that star on the horizon that I could look at to keep me going when things get tough (which in my case is when things get boring I discovered). But what is my ultimate goal? I can picture myself in a number of different jobs and I'm talking to people now and then to find out what their jobs actually entail (revelation: project leader sounds cool, but in reality means keeping track of budgets and all sorts of other bureaucracy). I recently saw the image below being shared and I think this is what I need to figure out: what do I like, what am I good at and what does my company need? What I don't know yet is how you're supposed to find these things out about yourself... to be continued.

One response so far

  • Zuska says:

    That's what I loved about the switch to industry - the broadening of possible paths. For me it was like letting go of the idea that there is one soul mate out there in the world for me. There are many people I could have met, fallen in love with, and made a good life with - but chance & geography led me to Mr. Z. There are many possible career options that can make one happy - including the option that work is not where one derives the main source of pleasure & identity, but is something more or less pleasant one does to earn a living so that the real source of pleasure & identity can be followed.

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