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In a perfect world
by Douglas E. Welch
June 2, 2000
© 2000, Douglas E. Welch
|Don't like working in an office||Do like working outside|
|Don't like answering user questions||Do like long hours of concentration|
|Don't like authoritarian managers||Do like working in a team|
|Don't like programming||Do like using existing applications|
and so on.
These positive items will become that basis for the description of your perfect job.
During my 5 years at Walt Disney Imagineering I was introduced to the project life cycle diagram that was used to manage all Imagineering projects. One of the first steps in any project was called Blue Sky. During "Blue Sky" project team members were challenged to come up with ideas for the project regardless of cost, complexity or the availability of technology to make the project happen. This cleared the way for creative thinking and helped produce hundreds of raw ideas that would then be run through the next step in the process, Feasibility. Blue Sky is the next step in your search for a perfect job.
Take a few minutes, an hour, a day, a week; whatever time you can find and hold your own personal Blue Sky session for your career. Self-discovery is never easy, but here are a few guidelines to help you through your first Blue Sky session.
After you have gone through the Blue Sky process a few times you will be ready to do some evaluation of the ideas you generated. You must be very careful during this evaluation, though, so you don't throw away ideas too quickly. You must evaluate the ideas on your ability to accomplish them in the future not your current situation.
For example, perhaps today you are working in technical support but really want to be a programmer. You don't have any training in programming. Even though you can't become a programmer overnight you do have the ability to learn how to be a programmer. If this is something you really want you can work to achieve it.
As you evaluate each possible job you should then develop a short list of actions that would lead you to this goal. If you want to be a programmer you will want to talk with other programmers and observe their work to insure yourself that this is the type of work you will enjoy. You will need to investigate and enroll in some programming classes. You might also want to find a mentor who can help guide you through your journey. Notice that none of these steps is impossible.
This process of dreaming and then evaluating can help you to understand not only what work you might like to do, but also the steps you need to take in order to achieve the perfect job. Be open to where your dreams might take you. It is possible that you might even discover that a high-tech career is not what you desire most. Regardless of the outcome there is much to be gained from developing your career instead of just letting it happen around you.
Douglas E. Welch is a freelance writer and computer consultant
in Van Nuys, California. Readers can discuss career issues with
other readers by joining the Career Opportunities Discussion on
Douglas' web page at: http://www.welchwrite.com/
He can reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org