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Chaos Theory And Landing In A Good Job

Updated on May 14, 2015

If you have opted to choose English, German or French literature or History as your major, you are likely to be questioned by your relatives or friends as how you will land in a job. They may advise you that had you opted for Finance, Marketing or Information Technology as your major, you would almost have an automatic ticket for a good corporate job.

It is true new graduates are staring at growing unemployment, stiff competition both from better qualified and more experienced candidates, freezes in hiring and so on. So, you may be desperate to accept any job that comes your way, regardless of the subject you have majored in. Your decision may either be liberating or horrible or create an oxymoron-like situation wherein it may be both liberating and horrible.

Katharine Brooks, Ed.D., who has authored the book "You Majored in What? Mapping Your Path from Chaos to Career", says that most of us approach our career planning in a logical manner. More importantly, our approach to the task is linear. This means that if you have chosen Mathematics as your major, you must choose a career that is related to it. Likewise, if you have chosen History, you must become a teacher of History and so on. But, when you are staring at problems like increasing unemployment, competition, etc., can you afford to make such linear decisions? It can not be as straight-forward as you think.

The solution is you must search for less obvious and non-linear options that are available. You must be smart enough to use what is known as the Chaos Theory so you can make a wise careen plan and land in a good job.

You may be concerned as to how to apply this theory of mathematics that was originally developed for forecasting weather, to your task of career planning. In Chaos theory, experts have to necessarily take into account those forces the influences of which can never be predicted. But they make use of the right tools for analyzing the underlying patterns that emerge after taking into account all those unpredictable forces. Experts are very much aware that chances of the emerging patterns being linear are very, very low.

So, if you apply such a non-linear approach to your career-planning, you will be approaching the task in a new and unique way. So, being a new entrant to the job field, you need to use more comprehensive exercises and tools for choosing your career. Katharine Brooks, who is also the director of liberal-arts career services at the Texas University, Austin, has come out with a number tools, quizzes, exercises, etc. so you can crystallize your inclinations and talents. If you learn them, you can not only be different from the crowd but can wow the job interviewers as well.

According to Brooks, new graduates need not have any worries about their future. However, they should have an open mind to embrace the possibilities that may be available to them if they get rid of the idea that their job should be related to their college major. Studies reveal that only 30% of people land in jobs that are related to their majors. But whether these people are happy in their jobs is a big question because they discover very soon that they are interested in many other things.

On the other hand, most of the lot of the remaining 70% seem to be happy. Therefore, it is wrong to choose a job just on the basis of the remuneration you will be getting because you may have to spend a lot for finding happiness in life. If you choose a job in which you are not happy though you are paid well, you will not be working but will be just struggling to live.


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    • Mel Carriere profile image

      Mel Carriere 

      3 years ago from San Diego California

      I think we have to choose a course of study that we will be able to pursue with passion, regardless of the job opportunities available. The world is full of unhappy drones going to a job they hate everyday. We only get one life, we should enjoy it. Great hub.


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