Why You Should Plan for Five Careers in a Lifetime
On an episode of Inside Quest, a show that investigates how people achieved success, host Tom Bilyeu asked author Simon Sinek on his view of Millennials in the workplace of today. Sinek, a motivational speaker and author of Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, says one of the greatest problems with Millenials in the workplace is their expectation of “instant gratification.”
Instant gratification, according to Entrepreneur, is “the desire to experience pleasure or fulfillment without delay or deferment.” Sinek says Millenials seek instant gratification by jumping from company to company without the patience to stick at one and advance up the ladder.
Helen Barrett, Work & Careers editor at Financial Times, recently wrote an op-ed piece discussing why it’s necessary for today’s business education graduates to plan for five careers in a lifetime.
“Thanks to automation and the forces of globalization, working life is impermanent and unpredictable, and will only become more so,” Barrett writes. “That is daunting, but it is also liberating. We are increasingly willing to take control.”
The increasing influence of automation in many industries has forced many to seek a well-paying job. “If they are lucky, they can expect to sprint from their mid-twenties before hitting a career peak in their forties,” Barrett says. “If they are unlucky, they will be pushed out by automation.” Alternatively, graduates may also decide to start a business or develop a sideline and take a slower route in their career. Doing both, Barrett says, is probably the safest option.
For Barrett, she spent a decade in advertising only to switch to journalism in her mid-thirties for half the pay. Switching careers meant starting over at the bottom of the ladder. It took her four years to catch up.
Barrett also recommends books such as Dorie Clark’s Entrepreneurial You, a hands-on guide to building a portfolio of revenue streams, both traditional and online, for those looking to strategically shape their career future.
“It makes sense to seek protection by reinventing ourselves before someone else decides we are dispensable,” Barrett writes. “I started over once, and would be prepared to do it again. In this world, planning for multiple careers is the only rational response.”