A career and a job are often interpreted as words with similar meaning while they stand for different things. Let us understand each term by narrowing down to the six key differences between them.
A career is the pursuit of a lifelong goal or ambition. It is the progression towards achieving a specific goal in life in your line of work. You can say a person who does the work they love is on the way to achieving their career goals.
On the other hand, a job is an activity through which an individual earns payment. These are daily tasks one undertakes in exchange for monetary compensation.
Growth Vs. Earning
In life, you can do as many jobs as you can to earn a certain amount of payment. This can involve moving between different fields. Having a career takes much more effort to build yourself up and grow. Unlike an occupation, a career is more like a profession with clear goals that usually requires specific training.
Passion Vs. Payment Driven
In building a career, you will need to first know what you what to do in life and what you are really passionate about. Then you will need to build skills, create a network, maybe go back to school to master a certain field in order to become competent in that field. One can say they have attained a successful career when they are enjoying a fulfilling and enriching job that they are passionate about. They have managed to move up from junior to top senior position and they have managed to be guided by passion and not by the need to earn more. While a job is something you do simply to earn money; a career is a series of connected employment opportunities fueled by a sense of passion.
Collecting Experience Vs. Doing the Bare Minimum
A career stimulates innovation, eagerness to learn and risk-taking. When building a career, you will be collecting as many necessary experiences as possible and sometimes you will be required to go the extra mile, doing tasks beyond your minimum job description.
On the other hand, jobs provides valuable skills that can help you in building up your career. Most jobs-oriented individuals do the minimum or only what is required of them without annoying the boss.
More Network Opportunities Vs. Less Network Opportunities
A a career provides plenty of network opportunities while a job offers few networking opportunities. But it does not mean that jobs are not valuable. One can earn a decent amount of payment through a job as this is the primary focus for many of the less networking establishments.
Long Term Vision Vs. Short Term Vision
Career-oriented individuals have clear vision of where they want to reach. They are interested in moving up the ladder. However, jobs-oriented individuals always look for a new job that probably offers more pay. Lack of clear vision of where they what to go career wise is one of the characteristic of jobs seekers.
Happy working life Vs Tiresome Working life
Life is more easy for those who enjoy doing what they do and seeing themselves growing to live their visions. Individuals who are determined to build careers tend to experience happy working life more than those who do not. Career always provides learning that fuels your future. Since most jobs have little impact on future work life, most job-oriented employees experience boring work experience, since having a strong focus on their careers is not a priority. There is a difference between doing what is required and doing what you love.
Although a job and a career might not mean the same thing, they tend to complement each other. It is also true that the a total progression of your professional life will eventually align you with your career, and although it might take you a lot of years and jobs to finally know what you are passionate about, at the end this will be the start of a fulfilling career life.