Many of us (particularly those of us from Asian families) may have been spurred on by our parents into a certain career direction. However, who said that the future’s exclusively brighter for those on more ‘typical’ career paths?
In a world that’s changing by the minute, every other day, new, strange jobs get created in the wake of constant disruption. What used to be a straightforward and predictable professional journey for talented young minds has now transitioned into a multi-faceted barrage of opportunity.
It’s an era where it appears that there’s something for everyone and anyone can become anything they want. It’s not just engineers, doctors and lawyers who are successful. These days, social media sensations and whacky business owners, oddball designers and digitally-empowered content creators could find themselves in equally (if not more) lucrative positions than those other professionals.
Here are a few examples of career paths that might raise some eyebrows at your next family gettogether (until you tell them your bank statement).
Producers and production executives
The field of television seems to have gone the way of the dinosaurs. It’s been getting disrupted big time for quite a while now. What was once pretty much the dominant mainstream media and entertainment outlet has now given way to a colossal network of platforms and you can thank (or depending on who you are, malign) the development of digital capabilities for this. Social media, apps, subscription-based online platforms (like Netflix) and more are now at the tips of the fingers of consumers in numerous countries around the world.
This has led to a surge in content and a huge demand for production assistants that support producers, as well as film crew staff, directors and producers of film, television and theatre sets. You don’t even necessarily have to be attached to a studio anymore. As a freelance production assistant, you might just get to work with some of the biggest names in entertainment (and earn a hefty sum as your experience grows).
Although you may have once merely associated it with geeky tech-enthusiasts, the drone industry has become a part of many technological applications and initiatives used in a variety of industries. The commercial use of drones can be found in sectors ranging from construction and property to entertainment and data analytics and this has, in turn, brought about a need for drone-savvy individuals.
If you decide to tell your dad that you want to be a drone pilot, drone engineer or drone developer, assure him that you could be headed towards an extremely bright future. As the world begins to warm up to the possibilities brought about by drone technology, you may even be able to make your name in the world of sports via drone racing (a sport very closely resembling gaming). If you love playing video games (check out our other article here) and consider yourself good at handling controllers, this just might be the awesome career path for you!
Students of the creative arts may have previously been considered operating somewhat at the short-end of the stick, however, the versatility and possibilities of our digitally-driven era have turned the life of an artisan into a pretty attractive one. Artists of different types and from various walks of life are now empowered in more ways than one and their career paths may never have been brighter.
Whether you’re a graffiti artist, a contemporary dancer, an experimental maestro or a makeup-enthusiast, the artistically inclined these days seem to have more options and a larger market to work with. Niches, communities and groups of straight-up oddballs that appear to have crawled out from the recesses of the internet can all serve as significant bases, allowing artists to get a phenomenal amount of support and exposure. Artists don’t have to be mainstream to make money anymore.
Social media managers
Building a career around social media is also no longer such a far-fetched idea. Marketing and branding happen on these platforms and so many businesses are in need of proper direction as well as good management for their social media accounts. If you’re a young, talented individual today, you should seize the opportunity and rise to the challenge.
Social media managers are often tasked with overseeing content, structure and more. This field is growing at an average pace of 9 per cent, with over 240,000 jobs already reported in the industry so as far as employment goes, you should be all set.
Ever heard of the term “fitspiration”? It’s all the rage on social media platforms like Instagram and involves a staggering amount of motivational fitness content produced by coaches, instructors and influencers from all around the world.
The creation of diverse fitness movements like HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training), dance groups, pilates and yoga have all brought about a landscape in which fitness professionals can survive and thrive. Some fitness instructors these days may never even meet their clients, opting instead to correspond online during sessions. It’s a field that’s growing at a whopping 10 per cent.
Believe it or not, even nurse midwives may be on the rise. As one of the most unconventional yet promising jobs of recent times, a nurse midwife is a health care provider who manages all aspects of pregnancy, from gynaecology and health to labour and delivery. In fact, many nursing jobs that have to do with aspects of pregnancy are apparently all showing great promise. Benefits include both being able to be employed in a hospital and working as a self-employed professional (assuming you’ve gone through all the necessary certified courses).
When it comes to your future career, the road less travelled may very well be paved in gold. There are many more unconventional jobs to look out for (and even more seem to be cropping up). The very foundation of the concept of ‘a career’ may be called into question as roles, jobs, titles and positions all end up at a crossroads where the choice to be mundane is no longer the only option and the reality of being able to live a life of fulfilled purpose, joy and happiness, of being able to fully live out your dreams becomes more of a reality.