Renée Whitelocke, Youthlink Writer
Do you know what you want to be when you grow up? How about what it will really take to pursue the career of your choice? Have you ever thought outside the box when contemplating your career, or will you follow the beaten path?
Many schools are now hosting Career Day in recognition of the need to expose students to different types of careers and give them the opportunity to have their questions answered and their speculations resolved.
Youthlink wants to do our part by providing you with an inside-look at jobs you may be considering from representatives in different fields at various companies.
Tips on choosing a career path
Choosing the right career may be one of the most difficult tasks that you will ever undertake. Youthlink recently posed pertinent questions to the business development manager at Jamaica International Insurance Company Limited (JIIC), Winsome Gibbs, about her job and choosing a career path.
Youthlink (YL): What do you think individuals should consider when choosing a career path?
Winsome Gibbs (WG): (You) need to consider the things they enjoy doing the most. You should never choose a career that you are not passionate about. At least eight hours out of your day is spent at work so if you don't like what you do, you will be miserable most of the time. Work is more rewarding when you truly enjoy what you are doing.
YL: What would you say is the most important lesson you've learnt as the business development manager at JIIC?
WB: There are so many lessons that I have learnt at JIIC. However, if I had to choose one, it would be the value of feedback from customers (be it positive or negative) and the importance of listening to that feedback and acting upon it in a timely manner.
YL: What five tips would you give to an individual who wants to be a business development manager?
WB: 1. Pay attention to your image.
2. Stay abreast of current affairs, especially those happening in your industry.
3. Get social, make sure to network (this is not a nine-to-five job).
4. Be a good listener.
5. Be aware of what your competitors are doing.
Raquel Smith (The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica) on being a chartered accountant:
You may become a partner in an accounting firm, you can be employed in a senior position or you can also be a lecturer at a leading institution. Being a chartered accountant would help someone to develop quantitative auditing, business management, human/resource and marketing skills.
Camille Carter (Scotiabank) on working in the banking industry:
One of the key benefits of working at Scotiabank is that we offer career planning, coaching to all our employees and opportunities for career development and growth ... meaning that you start at one job but that doesn't necessarily mean that's where you will be forever. You plan your career, you work towards it and move up in the organisation.
Renell Reid (College of Hospitality and Vocational Skills) on being a food-service manager:
You have the opportunity of not just operating a restaurant, you have the opportunity to supervise other staff who work within this area. You are also given the chance to train in the areas where cooking the food and making the beverages are concerned.
Orville Francis (Jamaica International Insurance Company Limited) on being an insurance agent:
One of the great things about being an insurance agent is that you can make a lot of money (laughs)! It gives you the opportunity to be rounded, especially in terms of the insurance field, because you can actually do different classes of insurance when you're an agent. This job would help you to develop public-speaking skills. You can even go as far as doing finances.