Growing up, we must’ve heard or read a dozen or more (solicited or not) career advice from our elders. It seems just about everyone knows how to improve your career and won’t hesitate to give their two cents.
Although some still hold true today, others didn’t exactly age well. This is because following these outdated career advice can negatively affect your career, as they promote toxic ideas that can adversely affect your emotional and mental health.
What are these counterproductive advice you should avoid? Let’s find out.
Stick to Your Plans.
Having a career plan isn’t a bad idea. It helps give you a sense of direction, comfort, and motivation. A good one also enables you to set the right short and long-term career goals. However, it becomes problematic when you adhere to it too rigidly.
That’s why one outdated career advice you should not follow is sticking to your established plans no matter what. Instead, you should learn from the upheaval of the past few years due to the pandemic and the rise of AI to be flexible and work with what you have.
I learned this lesson the hard way after I graduated from college. My career plan was to pass the Licensure Exam for Teachers (LET), get a teaching job, take my master’s degree, and then become a professor. However, the pandemic happened, and my plans got derailed.
I remained unemployed for almost two years, hoping a school would still hire me despite the pandemic. Fortunately, I snapped out of it last 2021 and turned my efforts to writing. Hence, that’s why I’m a content writer now. Although, I still plan on earning my master’s degree and becoming a professor. Just not right now.
Avoid Job Hopping.
Back in the day, there were jobs that paid enough to keep you financially stable for a long time. That’s why your parents, older relatives, and especially your old boss often tell you to stick to one job – regardless of whether you like your job or not.
However, things are different now. With the rising costs of necessities due to inflation, salaries today are barely enough to meet the current needs of workers. When your current job doesn’t pay you enough to support yourself or your family, then why remain?
Additionally, many more opportunities are available today compared to your parents’ time, especially if you’re seeking online jobs.
Sticking only to one job prevents you from seizing these opportunities and could negatively affect your career progression. In addition, sticking to a job you don’t like, no matter how much it pays, damages your mental health over time.
Follow Your Passion.
“Find a job you love, and you’ll never work for a day.” In an ideal world, you’ll be able to find the perfect job you’d happily take on for the rest of your life.
Unfortunately, we don’t live in an ideal world.
Pursuing your passions alone won’t pay your bills. And turning an activity you love into a job may make you lose interest in it.
Also, your interests change over time; what you like doing today may not be the same thing you’d like to do tomorrow.
So, does that mean you shouldn’t pursue your passions and instead focus on finding high-paying jobs? Not really. You must strike a balance between doing the things you like -while also earning enough to support yourself and your family.
Going back to my experiences post-grad, even during college, I always knew I wanted to become a teacher. However, because of the pandemic, I didn’t pursue this as there are no openings in the schools in my area. So, I compromised and turned to another passion where I found work: writing.
You Must Graduate From a Good University to Find a Good Job.
This is perhaps the most common outdated career advice I’ve heard growing up. To find a good job, you must attend a good university, preferably one of the big four in the Philippines (UP, La Salle, Ateneo, UST). If you don’t, you’ll never find a decent paying job and succeed at building your career.
Although this advice may remain valid if you’re looking for local jobs, this isn’t the case in remote work. Trust me, foreign employers don’t particularly care if you went to college – let alone which university you came from -so long as you can do your job well.
And if you need to upskill yourself, there are plenty of online courses available for you to avail of.
Never Say “No” to Your Boss.
Another outdated career advice our parents told us when we’re starting a new job is to never say no to our boss’s requests.
Unfortunately, taking on too many tasks in a short amount of time is among the quickest ways to burn out. This is especially true when you keep accepting assignments beyond your current skills or job description.
To avoid this, you must learn to negotiate and set boundaries on what you can and cannot do. Doing this helps you avoid being assigned tasks beyond your capabilities and identifying which assignments you should prioritize.
And when you have to say no to your boss, ensure that you have a good and legitimate reason for doing so. Don’t just say: “I can’t do this.” Instead, have a valid reason, such as having other urgent tasks or having too much on your plate already.
Word of Advice? Don’t Be Too Trusting of Career Advice from Others.
You can tell a lot about someone depending on what kind of career advice they give you. The thing is, however, what worked for them might not work for you.
So be wary of the career advice you get from your elders, as they could well be outdated. Remember, it’s your career we’re discussing here, so you’re the only one who can say what works for you and what doesn’t.
But if there’s one advice you should always follow, it’s that if you’re looking for online work opportunities, Remote Staff is the place to go. Our jobs list has a wide range of positions available for you to choose from. Thus, you’ll never run out of jobs to apply for. Good luck!