THE FINAL STEP IN YOUR CAREER CHOICE: VISITING THE O.O.H.

The title sure sounds like a suggestion to visit a clinic or medical office, but that’s not it. It is, however the suggestion to visit the Occupational Outlook Handbook (O.O.H.)…just like it states, right? Providing you with an outlook (and then some) of your career/job choice.

An occupation is a formal way for saying your job, or career. In my work, I encourage so many people to consider their job/career choice, and then go to the Occupational Outlook handbook site through BLS.GOV. There are tons of sites out there that give you some information about the nature of jobs/careers and info like salaries. But bls.gov provides you with the most accurate and data-statistical information regarding specific jobs, including potential salary.  What’s great about this site, is it is sponsored by the government. I know, sounds like a bad word to throw around right now. But in this case, the government provides us with the most accurate and detailed information regarding any job available. What’s more is that it will give you the outlook of that job for the future. I love it.

Are you struggling with what you want to do for the rest of your life?

Are you doing something now in high school or college that your gaining experience in, and that you really want to get paid to do?

What are you majoring in college? Don’t know yet?

Sure, you want to be a Pediatrician, or an Engineer, but do you REALLY know what is involved with that kind of work?

Do you already have 2 or 3 career goals or ideas in mind, just don’t know which one to choose?

Believe me you’re not alone. There are plenty more people that answer these questions, but don’t know where to go to get the information needed. Some go through college and ear a degree without really knowing what kind of job they would actually do.

BLS.GOV stands for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), which is sponsored by the Federal Government and solely supported and information fed through the U.S. Department of Labor. What’s important for you to refer to is the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH). In fact, click on this link now and bookmark the page. For years now, I’ve referred to this site for more details about what kinds of jobs are out there, what the nature of the work is, how much money you can make, etc. This site has NEVER failed me and I refer it in every one of my career consulting sessions. I wholly support bls.gov and want you to refer to it.

I wanted to point out a few key things that are important and will really benefit you and what you looking for.You know the job title, but need to get some more details like salary, nature of the work, etc. This site will give you this, but check out these few things for you to be aware of:

  • Pay attention to the projections specifically the 2008-2018 projections. This link will provide you with a pretty fair assessment of what that job looks like in the future. DO NOT base your decision just on this. You have to consider your skill, talents and personality as well. I wrote a great article about how you can make the right career choice(s). Check it out.
  • Most of the time, you would want to access this site to research a specific job. The most confusing thing I think many struggle with when visiting the site, is to know the industry related to the job/career choice. You should know what industry your career choice is in, whether it is Education, Business, Healthcare, etc.  but if you can’t there are two opportunities here: utilize the left hand drop-down menu bar. You will see different industries that would be tied to your choice. Find that industry and click on the link.
  • Or just look for “Index” and click on it. This will give you a more detailed alphabetical listing of all kinds of jobs/careers available. Click on that job and it will take you to that specific page. It makes it easier and gives you a chance to check out other occupations that you may never known existed!

Each of these are links for you to investigate further into what they entail regarding this specific occupation.

**Be sure to read the “Significant Points” section just underneath this list (above). The significant points section might provide you with some critical information regarding this job or career. Again, I recommend bls.gov to anyone that need some serious data regarding career/job choice. Utilize this information as it can be such a great help with your own choices.

What’s nice about this page is its consistency. It is very easy to navigate and no matter the job/career, it has the same categories of information, thus making it easier for you and maybe for some a little less intimidating.

Your Success is My Success,

Keith Lipke

I’m a careers and college recruiter, coach, mentor and blogger at The Career Closet. His passion is to educate, inspire, and give hope to young people who need it upon their search for the right career and college

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