A few days ago I came across a simple yet striking visual for finding a career that will be fulfilling for the long haul.  J. Wynia’s exercise has helped him and others when it comes to making important career decisions.

The diagram can help you sort out what passions would make a better hobby vs career, or what you would need to work on in order for that passion of yours to reach that “career sweetspot”. Ultimately putting you on the path to finding a career that will be fulfilling for the long haul.

Ultimately, the goal is to find a career that satisfies what we enjoy, what we are good at, and what the market pays for.

The Career Venn Diagram, How to Find Your Career Sweet Spot.

Stuff the Market Pays For and Stuff I Enjoy Doing

For many young professionals or those who are looking for a new career, this is the bracket you fall in.  You enjoy writing, selling, or any other marketable skill, but are just starting to become proficient in them.

The good news is that you are very close to reaching “Utopia”.  If you continue to improve your skills, you will likely find yourself in a career that you can enjoy for the long haul.

Stuff I Enjoy Doing and Stuff I’m Good At

For most of us, getting a job playing video games, reading books, or watching movies isn’t going to happen.  Although we may be very good at it and enjoy our time used on these activities, the market isn’t very likely to pay for it.

Although we are told to follow our passions, we must also be realistic in our career decisions.  We can save ourselves an incredible amount of time and energy by saving the interests that fall into this category as hobbies.

Stuff the Market Pays For and Stuff I’m Good At

Many people who are not satisfied in their current careers probably fall in this bucket.  You are brilliant at the work you do and you can make a living doing it, but you don’t really feel energized.

The best thing to do if you currently are in this field is to work on improving one of the skills in the “Stuff I Enjoy” and “Stuff the Market Pays For” buckets.

It’s okay to have a job that falls in this area.  You can find it reasonable working here for a short amount of time while you build up the necessary skills to get you to a career in the middle.

Fill in Your Diagram

The Career Venn Diagram, How to Find Your Career Sweet Spot.

Even though I’m already lucky to have a career that puts me in the center of the diagram, this exercise is helping me to prioritize how much focus I should give to other projects I would like to work on.

I can know whether to treat them as a hobby or to develop them into career potential.

What Do You Think?

Is this a fair gauge for finding a fulfilling career?

image courtesy of diegohp93