Did you dream of saving lives as a doctor when you were little? Or maybe jetting off around the world as an aeroplane pilot appealed to you more? Or perhaps you wanted to see your name in lights and perform on the stage at Wembley? Well, we don’t want to upset you but only 21 per cent of Brits achieve their childhood ambitions.
In a survey produced by LinkedIn, British men and women revealed their childhood dream jobs, which for men included engineer, scientist and police officer and for women, teacher, writer and actor. And, although just over one fifth ended up in their dream jobs or a related career, a third said they still dream about achieving that ambition.
But, here’s the good news: it’s never too late to chase your dream job.
Here are five tips on how to make your dream job a reality:
1. Follow your dream employers online. Most companies have accounts on both Facebook and Twitter where they will publish news, events and, most importantly of all, job opportunities. If you’re not following companies that you’d love to work for, you could miss out on making the first steps towards your dream career.
2. Maintain a professional online presence. Employers probably don’t need to see that picture of you on New Year’s Eve when you fell over after a few too many glasses of wine. They also probably don’t want to know how strongly you dislike David Cameron or how big your slightly inappropriate crush on Harry Styles is. But at the same time, they want to know that there’s more to you than just work. Employers like well-rounded people, who have a good range of interests so make that obvious from your social media profiles. Be yourself, but be aware of who could be looking at your profile.
3. Keep your LinkedIn profile up to date. You wouldn’t send in an out of date CV when you’re applying for a job, so don’t leave your LinkedIn profile out of date either. Your LinkedIn profile is an online CV that anyone can search at any time; don’t miss out by not having your most recent experiences listed.
4. Network, network, network. It’s such a cliché, but these days in many industries it’s not what you know so much as who you know. But it doesn’t matter if your parents aren’t best friends with the editor of The Times or Richard Branson isn’t your godfather. These days you can easily make connections through Twitter. Get involved in the field you want to be working in and engage in conversations with people who work in that field. Make use of the contacts you already have who might be able to help you widen your network.
5. Build up experience in that area. You’re probably not going to land your dream job straightaway, so be realistic and take small steps towards getting to where you want to be. Get some work experience in your chosen field, or maybe even take a different job with your dream employers – it’s a foot in the door and keep an eye on internal job advertisements.