The people land with the different areas of work during their life depending upon many personal traits, qualities, interests and available opportunities/or ability to create opportunity. Success and failure comes in everyone’s career but it is ultimately happiness that comes with working in an area of correct personal fit. There are many people who enjoy their failure as well (if that comes in the way what they want to do) because failure gives direction for success.
Selection of career type may be forced by circumstances sometime (like many parents prefer their siblings to choose medical and engineering after schooling, and many other examples) but results often are not so good for forced selections. It is the person who should take the initiative to judge his/her interests, aptitude and ability.
I am sharing few points of my view for selection of career.
Interest: This is inherent and varies from person to person. It is the first factor which decides a person’s happiness in working area. And it is must for someone to succeed in chosen area of career. Each individual have different level of interest for a selected stream, more the interest in particular area, more successful will be. Your interest will reflect in your activities and your involvements. In each field you can figure out a large folk least interest in what they are doing and generally pass their time to earn the livelihood. This majority of folk are simply the workers and it will be hard to say they will achieve in their career except carrying their career.
Same scenario you can see in the science fields. If you are from science field, then just think of how many time you search for words related to science/discovery/innovation/research… voluntarily (by your wish), not for professional requirement. See how many times you participate in science/research related activities, how many serials to watch to gain science related knowledge, how many articles you read from science related magazines or how many times you write a article for a science related magazine/fun book/or other similar source. This may reflect your general interest (you may judge from what you like to do/ your activities (at places, society, computer … )
(many people working in science fields might be knowing more details about who won the film fair awards instead of details who won the Noble prize or SS Bhatnagar awards).
Interest creates a thrust and eagerness to work towards excellence. Develop an interest (strong interest) in area of your career to excel in your fields. New perfections and excellence comes when your general interest and professional interest merge/coincide.
Vision/view: Generally, in most of the disciplines, the psychology and attitude of a person is judged “How positive he is towards the situations and aspects”. It is evaluated using different techniques/methods/examples. One general example is presence of water in glass. The candidate is shown a glass having some amount of water and asked ‘what is it?’. Candidate generally answers either ‘it is half filled glass of water’ or may answer ‘it is half empty glass of water’. He is right in both the answers but Candidate chose ‘filled’ or ‘empty’ word shows how he takes the things. Here comes the difference between a general folk and a science person (means the other disciplines and science discipline). A simple science person will answer “half of the volume in glass is occupied by water and rest half is occupied by air”; so a science person always sees the glass filled. And what a real science person can say “out of approximately 300ml of volume inside the glass, 150 ml is occupied by hydrogen oxide and 150ml is occupied by atmospheric gas (a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, carbon dioxide and other gases).
If someone asks you 'How are you?'. Then what is your preferred phrase
1. I am fine.
2. It is okay.
3. Not so good.
4. Not so bad.
(your selection reflects: 1. positive 2. normal 3. negative 4. double negative)
Select yourself and can judge your perception to situations.
An example generally cited is thinking of a stone breaker. Result and happiness differ from a merely stone breaker than who think he is building a temple by stone carving.
I attended one interview for the defence services (my second career choice). During the interview, I realized few points that they would be looking for a personnel. I want to share with you what I researched and how they evaluate. These points may apply to other fields and are personality traits.
1. Priority: Always arrange your tasks in priority.
Task given: A situation where you have to save the life of prominent personality, a young guy and a cow. Situation condition also differ like only you know about the endanger of the life of prominent personality; young man know about the possible endanger and cow has stranded in jungle. Now how you plan to save all three.
Ans: simply prioritize your tasks. Similar tasks you may across in daily life.
2. Responsibility: select what is your prime responsibility.
Task given: situation like you are traveling with your sister in a train. At the station, you saw few people are molesting one girl and your train is about to leave the station. What you will do. (Let’s try it, leave your answers in comments)
Ans: (update) try as Parveen said in comments (except pulling the chain of train) but first and your foremost responsibility is your sister (at that situation).. try to help the girl by asking the people (don't try to go and fight with gundas ... u don't what exactly is between them) and not to be cought in a situation that may be troublesome to your sister.
3. Attitude: Always positive (whatever worse situation may be).
4. Realistic and confident: understand what you are.
Understand your capabilities, what you are (capable of), what you can do, what you know, and upto what point you can improve. Don’t overshow ever.
5. Respect: Dignity and respect are always supreme. Money don’t have any value.
Task given: You are with your girlfriend at lonely place and you don’t have any weapon/arms in possession. Four gundas (anti-social elements) (having some short of arms) comes and
i. Ask you to give all money in your possession.
ii. Ask you to hand over the jewellery your girl friends wearing.
iii. Start molesting your girl friend.
What will be your reaction to these three situations one by one. Response as comment.
Ans: (update) don't react much untill it is upto money. when they comes to third point, then retialiate (parveen is right .. save the girl (that is ur prestige) ) to maximum.
6. Stability in behavior: Cool and calm.
Few other traits/qualities a science person particularly a researchers should have.
1. Innovative: Research will require you to be innovative at every step, u should have knowledge and ability to understand what is going on and what could be. You should have capacity to design the things that require to prove your hypothesis.
2. Result analysis: You patience and courage matter a lot in science and research. You will not get always what you expect from your study. Some call it a failure, but it is an ongoing process that you will face nearly everyday on some point. You will come across so many failures everyday, but you should have capacity to understand that and design your study in a perspective way. If your hypothesis is correct, then you will have to try again to perform with perfection. If not getting what you expected, then evaluate each and every point, step, procedure, tools used that may be causing it. If everything is correct, then evaluate what you are getting.
“If you get what you plan always then you will be designated a magician not a researcher”
3. Cautious (alert) observation and interpretation: whatever happening to experiments (most of the time new one and being performed first time), you should have capacity to observe that actively and analyse what is going on.
4. Ethical values: Today’s science (and researcher) needs it more than any other discipline. A science (particularly a researcher) should be aware of ethical values. This aspect has been raised in many instances. Ethical values are not limited to approval by ethical committee for your experiments (animal studies or others). Every aspect of research should have ethical values. Examples: while publishing your work, double check what you have written or going to communicate, double check the contribution of colleagues (certainly give who contributed to your work and don’t give unnecessary name simply for some favour). Don’t disturb colleagues in their work. Ethics of good working environment applies to/needs for science and research.
5. Presentation: Discussion of your results with confidence and rationally. Someone asked one what do you get after a Ph.D., the response was “ability to present anything”. You become a philosopher and can discuss anything as long as you want. Like if you are given a simple topic ‘Design of foot’ for presentation, then a Ph.D. student can speak/discuss as long as you want and your presentation may be covering different aspects like design of foots in animals, design variation in human races, size of foot, color of foot, factors responsible for variation …. So on. You will be thinking your own way of serialize the facts and parts to speak in elaboration.
This is one quality a Ph.D. student should have and certainly expected to have. All Ph.D. students may not be able to get great research (not all hypothesis work and circumstances/facilities may not be conducive), but whatever you got, you should be confident and able to present/discuss with all possible details.
These are few points beside many others that could be like time management, rationalize the things, be friendly with colleagues, interactions ……. .