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What Is the Difference Between a Job and Career?

Most people do not see a difference between a career and a job. The first time you hear the word is when your father says get a job. It is usually in response to a teenager who wants a car when they turn 16 or 17 years old. According to the dictionary, a job is a regular activity performed in exchange for payment, especially as one’s trade. A job can be full or part-time and generally thought to just be something to generate spending money, for that first car or pay bills. The biggest difference between a job and career is a job is not thought of to be long-term or require specific training. A career is a chosen pursuit; a profession or occupation. Can a job be part of a career? Yes! An entry-level position at McDonalds is generally thought of as a job for a lot of people. If you want to have a career in fast food restaurants, that entry-level position could be the first step in that career.

A career is generally long-term and requires specific training. A career can be a series of jobs that are related to that long-term goal or pursuit. A career should be something you think you like and have the skills and desire to succeed. If you like what you do, you are more likely to spend that additional time to be good at it. Ultimately, success is measured by how good you are at your chosen career. Business or society rewards success by paying high salaries or hourly wages. The best trades’ people are compensated well by allowing them to charge more for their services. A career usually requires more preparation than a job. In most cases, a career requires an education or training and takes time to achieve the goal. It takes time to figure out what you would like to do for your entire working career. For many people, they have multiple careers.

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