Career Choice: How to Follow Your Head and Heart

Career Choice: How to Follow Your Head and Heart
Jobstreet content teamupdated on 10 March, 2022
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In light of the pandemic, finding a job fast can take precedence over your original career choices. Such a decision is understandable; according to a JobStreet Job Report, two out five Singaporeans lost their jobs because of the crisis. Job-hunting competition has grown fierce with more than half (57%) of survey participants actively searching for job opportunities.

But with companies recovering, demand for new employees is also increasing, with 25% of employers looking to hire within the next three months—and an additional 17% in the next six months. Jobs most likely to be in the demand are in sales and customer service, human resources and administration, engineering, accounting, and IT.

But what if your career objective lies outside these sought-after roles? Should you ignore what your heart says and instead, go for the highest-paying jobs available? We weigh the pros and cons of both decisions.

Following your Heart vs Working for Money

Insights from JobStreet's Laws of Attraction: Multigenerational Workplace eBook show that the GenZ and Millenial sets seek dynamic work like advertising, which promises money, growth and flexibility. This thirst for career mobility and work excitement is characteristic of young people starting out in the workforce, eager to carve out a niche for themselves. Emotions play a vital role, suggesting a more "heart-centred" approach to job hunting.

Meanwhile, the older GenX and Baby Boomers are likely to be more practical and "head-centred" as seen in their priorities of salary and job security. They prefer retaining their scope of work over expanding it, choosing roles in traditional settings such as manufacturing, and food and beverage services. However, it is interesting to note that across generations, most respondents consider work-life balance-- a "heart" component-- highly important.

What happens when you follow your head and take on the practical path? A survey by the Medical Alert Buyers Guide shows that though this may land you the job with the best salary, benefits and promotion opportunities, you may not gain the most satisfaction from it. The survey indicates that those who followed their head enjoyed salaries 13% higher than those who followed their heart. Yet 60% of those who often based their choices on intuition said they were "very satisfied" with their current job, compared to the 50% who followed their head.

From these figures, it seems safe to conclude that a truly satisfying decision comes from considering both ways of thinking. But how can you achieve this balance? Our pointers will help you put both head and heart first in making career decisions.

Evaluate yourself.

Before choosing a career, get to know yourself. What are your interests? What do you excel in? What are the things you value? Even personality type plays a role in decision making. Take advantage of the online tests and tools on self-evaluation and career options to cultivate self-awareness. Compare your findings with the available job opportunities. If still unsure, reach out to people who have had experience with the job you are considering. Coupled with your intuition, their advice and first-hand wisdom can better guide you.

Be aware of job opportunities.

Stay abreast of the current in-demand jobs. Money is a valid motivation in seeking jobs, but so are happiness and fulfillment. By seeking balance between monetary and emotional satisfaction, you have a better chance of finding a job that suits you.

But what if you chance upon a for-immediate-hiring position in sales but, despite an attractive salary offer, you are unsure if this is a good fit for you? Honor your current situation and assess what it calls for. Will this job meet your most pressing priorities? Aside from the pay, are there aspects to it that play to your passions and strengths? At this point, your transferable skills are of utmost importance.

Define success in your own terms.

Success used to be only about steadily rising through the ranks and enjoying regular salary increases. But with emotional value coming into the picture, job enjoyment now plays a vital role in success. Low career satisfaction can lead to emotional stress, which according to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention of the United States, accounts for 75% of doctor consultations. A study states that stress-related illnesses include everything from headaches and upset stomachs, to declined mental health, cancer, and heart disease.

When making decisions, listen to what your head and heart both have to say. Carefully weigh your options then make the best decision depending on the situation. There is no shame in choosing one over the other. Circumstances constantly change, and your ability to adjust to them will allow you to thrive and rise above challenges.

After a thorough examination of what you need and look for in a career, you can now find #JobsThatMatter on JobStreet. The more you search, the more JobStreet understands your preferences—thanks to AI learning! Learn more about making sound career choices with expert advice in our Career Resources Hub.Bur first, take advantage of the current job market by updating your profile!

At JobStreet, we believe in bringing you #JobsThatMatter. As a Career Partner, we are committed to helping all jobseekers find passion and purpose in every career choice. And as the number 1 Talent Partner in Asia, we connect employers with the right candidates who truly make a positive and lasting impact on the organisation.

Discover Jobs That Matter. Visit JobStreet today.

About SEEK Asia

SEEK Asia , a combination of two leading brands JobStreet and JobsDB, is the leading job portal and Asia's preferred destination for candidates and hirers. SEEK Asia's presence span across 7 countries namely Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam. SEEK Asia is part of the Australian Securities Exchange-listed SEEK Limited Company, the world's largest job portal by market capitalisation. SEEK Asia attracts over 400 million visits a year.

About SEEK Limited

SEEK is a diverse group of companies, comprising a strong portfolio of online employment, educational, commercial and volunteer businesses. SEEK has a global presence (including Australia, New Zealand, China, Hong Kong, South-East Asia, Brazil and Mexico), with exposure to over 2.9 billion people and approximately 27 per cent of global GDP. SEEK makes a positive contribution to people's lives on a global scale. SEEK is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange, where it is a top 100 company and has been listed in the Top 20 Most Innovative Companies by Forbes.

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