Which type of career will make you happiest? / by Krista Boivie

Which type of career will make you happiest? That’s is the million dollar question isn’t it?  If your anything like me, you’ve asked yourself this a thousand times.  My drive to answer this question has dominated my thoughts for the last 10 years. 

Choosing a career is every bit as important as the person we choose to spend the rest of our life with.  Who teaches us how to find a career? How do we figure it out? 

Robert Koch in his book 80/20 offers a way to approach answering this question.  Look at the chart and ask yourself which box best describes you?

  • Box 1 people are those that are ambitious and want the structure of an organization. Koch describes how these types of jobs are dwindling quickly as more and more companies turn to outsourcing. Large organizations provide structure and support for the ambitious but they are no longer secure.
  • Box 2 people are those that want the freedom of independence.  They also are highly ambitious and want the respect of their peers or in their niche, but they play by their own rules. Koch cautions that if you fall soundly within this box, resist the temptation to hire people.
  • Box 3 people are builders.  They want to work with others, but don’t want to be employed by companies.  They are the entrepreneurs of today.
  • Box 4 people are not overly ambitious, but they enjoy working for someone and having a purpose.
  • Box 5 people desire autonomy, but don’t want the stress of their own firm.  Work in freelancing best fits this group.
  • Box 6 people are careers like Teachers and Counselors--those that don’t desire ambition, but want to develop others.  Their purpose is all about the journey.

My job currently fits in Box 6, but my dream career fits more between Box 2 and 3. I don’t want to be completely independent, but I want to collaborate with others and create something unique.  I still don’t know what job exactly fits this box, but this chart helped begin to identify the right path as I test which career will be the best fit for me.

Today is the last day that my favorite money & career guru, Ramit Sethi, will be selling his “How to Find Your Dream Job” course.  I have been following his blog for a couple of years and I decided to finally test his full-paid course.  His free material is astonishingly good. I will be reporting my journey as I take the 8-week course and hopefully get a better idea of what career will make me the happiest.