Q: I was chatting with one of my friends who is a doctor and he almost convinced me that some careers are more beneficial to the society than others. I am a mechanic in our company’s workshop where I have been maintaining a fleet of vehicles for the past 10 years. Is he right? Are some careers more valuable than others? I would like to make an impact in the world.
Careers provide avenues for people to pursue purpose in life, scale aspirations and make a difference in the world. Some consider careers to be templates on which individuals etch their legacies. It is therefore important that people choose careers that enable them to uniquely experience the fulfilment of spending their lives engaged in worthwhile endeavours.
Career choices could depend on many factors, including personal interest, ability, qualifications, disposition and natural endowment. Not everyone can therefore fit in every career.
All careers, however, afford the opportunity to make a difference in the world. Some careers may have a more critical role to play than others during certain seasons. During a pandemic for instance, medics’ contribution in the face of considerable risk to their own lives is both crucial and laudable.
The world needs other careers too, as there are numerous challenges to be dealt with. Without your role, your employer’s fleet would be in a poor condition.
If transport were not an important part of your organisation, your position would not be required. The importance of a career does not depend on the amount of limelight that falls upon those engaged in it. Before an individual rises onto any raised stage, many others will have been involved in his success, some of who may never be known.
Careers do not confer dignity to people. Rather, people bring dignity and impact to their careers.
Opportunities to make a difference in your world abound every day. The impact on your world neither needs to be international nor in front of the galleries of applauding voices.
Some of the opportunities to make the greatest impact come dressed as someone who needs your assistance, empathy, kindness, inspiration, forgiveness, and encouragement. Are you more interested in making a marked difference in the lives of others or soaking in applause?
Consider the words of Maya Angelou: ‘I have learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel’.
Fred Gituku Human Resources Practitioner