What Is Your Career Orientation?

Sections of this topic

    A career is more than a job, more than a sequence of jobs, more than luck or happenstance. It may be altered by fortune or misfortune but at least for most people it has a sense of direction.

    Basic talents, values, and motives have an impact when decisions are made about careers. To help you clarify your career aspirations and achieve more successful person-job fit, there is an assessment tool called the Career Success Map Questionnaire. It was developed by Dr. Brooke Derr, global business and careers scholar. It identifies five distinct career orientations, each bearing different motivational needs, potential problems and strategies for success.

    Which do you identify with?

    1. Getting Ahead:
    Driven by advancement and upward mobility. Prefers action, using power to get things done and achieving goals. It can lead to playing politics, aggressive competition and even peer jealousies. So learn the organization’s culture, and develop and nurture strategic relationships

    2. Getting Secure:
    Driven by job security and company loyalty. Prefers predictability and routine, seeks ‘belonging” and sincere recognition. It can lead to conflict with an achievement culture and difficulty to deal with change. So learn to go with the flow better and let others know of your contributions.

    3. Getting Free:
    Driven by independence and autonomy. Prefers less structure, control over work processes and creative freedom. It can lead to conflict with management and being seen as not a team player. So first pay your dues, get credibility, and contribute to the team effort.

    4. Getting High:
    Driven by challenge and excitement. Prefers cutting edge opportunities and doing new things in new ways. It can lead to a conflict with the organization culture and job requirements. So choose the right company and develop political skills.

    5. Getting Balanced:
    Driven by the balance between work, important relationships and personal development. Prefers flexibility and time for other pursuits. It can lead to a perception that you don’t take your work seriously. so be careful abut timing, be seen as a team player, and pay your dues first.

    Career Success Tip:

    Keep in mind that the purpose of any career assessment tool is to improve your awareness of self and to suggest potentially suitable career management strategies that fit you and lead to the achievement of your goals. They do not guarantee success nor do they mandate your pursuit of a specified path. Use them to enlighten not to dictate. Let me know if you would like to take this assessment. Also see Career Anchors and Career Personality.

    Do you want to develop Career Smarts?