Don’t let these 5 career myths hold you back

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Did you know that people of working age are now expected to have six to seven different jobs in their lifetime? Because of technology, the world is changing quickly, and businesses are changing the way they do things. It is no longer common to stay in the same job for your whole life.

To keep up, employees need to be flexible and willing to learn new things. A 2016 Deloitte study found that employers need people with different skills and knowledge. They also need people who are interested in different areas. This means that employees need to be willing to learn new things and stay up-to-date with the latest trends.

Are your beliefs about careers changing with the times? Or do you still believe these myths?

  1. Myth 1: You have only one dream career

    Some people regard careers the same way they do romantic relationships: You only have one soulmate and you’ll never be happy unless you find that one person.

    This is not true. You can learn new things and develop new skills every day. Your passions, talents, and needs can change. There could be other jobs that you are not exploring that you could be perfect for. Don’t limit yourself to one.

  2. Myth 2: Career choices need to last a lifetime

    Change is the only thing that is constant in life. If the business environment changes, so can career paths and goals. If you have established a career, do your best to make it work. But if you are not happy, or if you foresee that your career won’t work in the long run, don’t stay stuck in it. You do have choices (Read: Thinking of a career shift?).

  3. Myth 3: You can work only in your field

    This is one of the main reasons why some newcomers get frustrated when job hunting, according to career coaches. Most limit their job search within their field, concentrating on the job title. Then they complain that job opportunities are too few.

    Widen your prospects by making a thorough evaluation of your job experience and soft skills first. Discover your transferable skills and list them down. Then look for jobs – but don’t focus on the job title – look at the job skill requirements. For example, if you are a professor, don’t look only for teaching jobs. Educators have research skills and presentation skills that may be applicable to research and development in private firms or even HR training.

  4. Myth 4: The only way to move up is to get more degrees

    In Canada, having a Master’s Degree or an MBA is not always required for managerial positions. Education is important, but having experience and the the right soft skills often weigh more. If you want to climb the corporate ladder, take the lead in projects that would hone your managerial and communication skills, or take a leadership training short course.

  5. Myth 5: “I’m too old to start a new career”

    People now work well into their 70s and 80s. As long as you stay up-to-date and continue learning new skills, age will not be a limitation. Many retirees have found fruitful second careers that they are more enthusiastic about compared to their former job.

Article updated March 24, 2023.

Busting some common career myths, Infobip, Highbrow; What color is your parachute? Dick Bolles, 2017; The future of the workforce. Critical drivers and challenges, Deloitte Report, 2016. Accessed August 22, 2017.

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Community Resources

Why choose to struggle when support is for free? In Manitoba, you can avail of career guidance, from resume-writing to job-matching, from these organizations:
Manitoba Start
Opportunities for Employment (OFE)
Success Skills Centre
Manitoba Jobs and Skills Development Centres
Accueil Francophone
EDGE Skills Centre
Osbourne Village Resource Centre

As most immigrant serving organizations provide employment support or counselling, you can also refer to this list: Immigrant Serving Organizations.

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