Friday, August 23, 2002

It's Friday, so here's 5

1. What is your current occupation? Is this what you chose to be doing at this point in your life? Why or why not? I am a senior operations analyst for a financial services complany. The "what you chose to be doing" phrasology is interesting. I do enjoy the nature of my job (consulting, coaching, project management, analysis and problem solving), I like my co-workers, I make good money, I live in the city that I love, and it's a terrific company to work for with innovative leaders who believe in treating their associates well. I'm learning a lot about business and the corporate world, and have learned that I don't want to work in a corporation, especially a financial services company. This company, however, has been a gateway to involvement in community service work and will help me finance my education to prepare for my next career. (Next question)

2. If time/talent/money were no object, what would your dream occupation be? Right now, my plan is to work in Public Health. I think I'm interested in the policy side of things, or perhaps consulting: conduct analysis to identify key issues and how to address them. As goofy as this sounds, I want to make the world a better place through my work. I don't want to work in a job where the bottom line is making a profit.

3. What did/do your parents do for a living? Has this had any influence on your career choices? My dad is career military (he's still a Naval officer after almost 35 years) and my mom is an elementary school librarian. My parents' careers have definitely influenced my choices. I was in the Navy for 5 years; my dad is the one who suggested the ROTC scholarship to pay for school (although he advocated going Air Force). Both of my parents love their jobs, so I seek to have that kind of happiness with my work. Both of them are supported by the government and tax dollars as well, which has probably influenced my political views (tax and spend liberal). Both of my parents work to support the "higher goals" of their jobs: to make the world safer, and to teach children a love of reading and learning, with the ability to conduct research. Never have they worked for the paycheck or to make the company more profitable. That, I think, has greatly influenced how I want to work and what kind of role I want to play in society as a professional.

4. Have you ever had to choose between having a career and having a family? No. I used to think about it a lot when I was in high school and college (should I be a doctor, what happens when I have kids, etc), but now, I'm not really sure I ever want children, and if I did, I would figure out a way to make that work with whatever job I have.

5. In your opinion, what is the easiest job in the world? What is the hardest? Why? No clue. Some days it feels like everyone I work with has an easier job than I do, but I think we all think that. Mine is harder because of its ambiguity, but this same ambiguity allows me to slack off a little more than people who have to hit hard numerical objectives. If you've seen the movie About a Boy, the Hugh Grant character had a pretty easy job (living off of his inheritance), but I don't think that's too realistic. Nursing is a very hard job, I think, particularly when they work with terminally ill children. Being a politician would be a pretty hard job, because you would have to determine whether you should compromise your values for the better good of those you serve.


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