Nicole Bellairs

To me a career is a particular path one selects to follow regarding employment in order to make a living in order to support yourself and / or a family.  Because we spend so much time and energy at work it is important to choose a career path that you will enjoy pursuing.

When I decided what career to pursue I looked at numerous factors.  I realised that to enjoy my career l had to look at myself first and then find something to pursue that matched me in order to enjoy working in my chosen career.  I also knew that in order to make a choice I needed to gather as much information as I possibly could.

Most importantly I looked at my interests and personality.  When I made my career choice there was no Internet.  I spent time at a career testing centre where I completed a series of tests designed to find out about my interests and my personality.  Today, with the help of the Internet it is easy and quick to do such tests at home.  The results of the various tests showed that a career in commerce would suit my personality and interests.  I knew the test results were accurate because my school results for Accounting, Economics and Business Studies were very high.

I also looked at the type of environment in which I wanted to work. In the commercial world there are various working environments.  I wanted to work mainly in an office, but I also wanted to be able to get out of the office to see people and help them satisfy their needs.  I wanted to be able to gather information about products and what people buy and why, because this fascinated me.

I then considered various career options available which suited this profile.  Here again I needed information.  I read a lot of literature on various careers and I talked to people who worked in business to find out about working conditions in the real world. I concluded that a career in Marketing or Purchasing would be good to pursue.

With all of this information in mind I considered what training is needed in order to successfully work in various career options.  In South Africa there are various Certificate, Diploma and Degree course that one can take in order to prepare for a career in Marketing or Purchasing. In the end I decided to study for a B.Com degree.  Some subjects were compulsory.  That was fine because their purpose is to give you a general theoretical and practical knowledge of how the various components of the commercial system work individually and as an interwoven unit.  Any person working in commerce should know and understand how the system operates in order to be successful at work.  I chose Economics and Business Economics as my major subjects.  The module choices available within these major subjects included issues related to Purchasing and Marketing which suited me just fine.

After graduating from university I started working in my career.  Over the years I have used the knowledge that I learned in my B.Com degree studies in many ways.  I have been involved in Purchasing as well as Marketing.  I have had many interesting experiences and jobs over the years. Most of all I have no regrets. Looking back I am glad that I took the time and made the effort to find out about myself and available careers to suit my needs before wasting time and energy pursuing unsuitable paths.





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