Singlestalk: Alignment-A A +A
Saturday, September 7, 2013
Michelle: Last week’s article on sex generated some feedback from a reader who said that it did not sound like us. I wonder:
How do we “sound” or come across? I am happy, though, that our article generated some reactions. We cannot always write about things that people perceive as “sounds like us.” Writers are content generators and it would be good to engage the audience through thought-provoking articles that are relevant but not necessarily sensationalistic.
This comes to the issue of Alex, 25, a licensed chemical engineer who works in a call center’s technical account. He is doing well but is not sure whether this is the career for him. It pays him well, gives him access to gadgets and he is also having lots of fun.
However, he’s wondering if he should have a job that’s aligned to the course he finished. My question is: Does alignment have to mean conforming to what is expected of you? Or in the case of Alex, can he not consider his current job as one that is aligned to what he has learned, not necessarily to what his course was in school?
DJ: Kids are asked with a question that initially appears to be trite: What do you want to be when you grow up? But it’s a focal question which, when answered, makes things easier for guys like Alex. It could have certainly influenced his choice of a college degree. If he envisioned himself to be in the movies for example, then he could have taken up acting or filmmaking.
But that’s water under the bridge. He’s already a licensed chemical engineer. Now what?
The question here isn’t really whether his job is aligned to the course he finished. That’s like putting the cart before the horse.
The real question is what does he want to accomplish in this lifetime? The next point to think about is whether working in a call center will take him there.
M: Just like readers who expect a certain formula from writers they read or blogs they follow. But presumptions can be wrong.
In the same way when we think that if one graduated an engineer, he or she should work as an engineer; or if you are a law graduate and bar passer, you should be working as a lawyer. Fortunately or unfortunately, this is not always the case.
I know of several lawyers who are not practicing law but are in different fields of endeavors for which their law education is an advantage. Although ideally it would be good to land a job in a field that you studied and a course you graduated from, what you do and can do is not limited to what you have learned in school. Learning is a continuous process.
DJ: There are three kinds of job we can pursue: (A) the ideal job that allows us to do what we love and get paid for it. (B) the back-up job that isn’t necessarily what we call ideal but is still aligned to it. And (C) the survival job we need to have because of mouths to feed and bills to pay. In Alex’s case, the next step after knowing what he wants is to assess his priorities.
The objective is for him to get to his ideal job. But if he’s got obligations which he cannot and should not neglect, he can consider pursuing his survival job and take it from there. What’s more important is he knows what he wants and is focused enough to follow through.
M: If Alex says he is having fun in his job but he is wondering if being in a call center is a job for him, a licensed chemical engineer, he can better understand what he really wants if he answers these questions: does he feel dissatisfied with his current job despite the benefits he enjoys because he feels that he is overqualified for his current job? Does he feel that being in a call center is beneath him as a licensed chemical engineer?
Does his ambivalence for his current job stem from other unmet professional needs?
If he realizes that staying in his job does not satisfy his professional and career goals, then he should consider other options.
Change and challenge are good, especially if it will align to ones hopes and aspirations.
DJ: Alex, I suggest that you begin with the end in mind. Knowing what you want reaffirms who you are. It puts your goals to focus. And it moves your ideals closer to the real world. Have a clear vision of your desired destination.
Once you figure that out, buckle down to work, create your own destiny and secure the future you envisioned. You are the captain of your ship. The choice has always been yours. Make the most of it!
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 08, 2013.