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Published on April 5, 2016 | Choosing a Career
Career Choices Become Hereditary. Will Individuality Be Ridiculed?


It is a common thing, especially in developing countries like India, that career choices of students are influenced by parents more than they should be. But a recent report by Facebook suggests that it is pretty much the case everywhere in the world. Facebook has released an interesting report on the similarity of career choices between that of parents and their children. Although no actual numbers have been released, the responsive graphs (posted on their original blog) show how careers of children are closely related to those of their parents.

Facebook analyzed the data of 5.6 Million parent-child pairs, both father-son and mother-daughter pairs. Occupations of most children were either similar or closely related to what their parents were doing. Though these data are not country-specific, the results are very close to what we see in India today.

similarity in career choices of mothers and daughters

similarity in career choices of fathers and sons

Facebook reports career choices are hereditary – Parents passing on their occupation preferences ridicules individuality

Although the graph points out that the majority of students devise their own paths totally irrelevant to that of their parents and siblings, the numbers of related careers is pretty high. For instance, most students whose family has an established business, grow up to run it rather than do something by themselves. Even if not a family business, it is easier to establish themselves when they join parents in their occupation. Just like genes that the parents pass on, career choices too have become hereditary. During childhood, it is normal for kids to be influenced by parents and their occupation. But ending up in a similar job suggests that the system disregards individuality, and sets other priorities like better financial status and a stable career.

Steve Jobs once said, “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” Students perform better when it is something that they care about. Therefore it is extremely important that they choose a career path that calls out to them than the path parents suggest without grounds.

Also Read: 7 bizarre reasons why the average Indian chooses Engineering

Start early and start right – Ensure time and effort are channelized towards a focused and thriving career

The catastrophic outcome of taking up careers out of compulsion is career switch. Professionals who switch careers after 10 or 15 or even 5 years, will have to start again at the bottom, and it will be years before they reach their old place, if at all they do. There is learning the new trade, practicing it and mastering it, provided that they get an employer willing to let them try. Employers prefer experienced and able employees over beginners who learn on the job. Financially and psychologically it is damaging, and affects not only the professional, but everyone associated with them. To not switch careers and stick to a job you hate is also tiring, so the candidate is stuck having to choose between two miserable outcomes. There is no saying how they could turn out. All this due to no fault of theirs because it is impractical to know of all the possible options at such an early age when one has to make a career choice.

Also Read: Our exclusive interviews with professionals: Anurag reflects upon wrong career choice and Aditya on taking a leap of faith towards his passion

The passion towards a stream is the only one that doesn’t fade with time. Everything else fades, and results in lack of motivation to pursue. What if they start right? What if they pick a trade that keeps them motivated? What if their career choices are backed by exabytes of verified data and scientific reasoning? Navigus was conceived upon these questions. An artificial intelligence platform, a sorting hat if you will, that looks into the student’s mind and knows where they will thrive, not just survive.

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