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5 of the best jobs for people who want to make a difference

By Fi Darby | 18 May 2018

Whether you are taking your first steps of independence into the world of employment or considering rerouting down another career path, it can be difficult to decide which would be the right career for you. Do you head for the big bucks and chase the money or do you choose a career that will play to your strengths and give your much-loved hobbies an additional outlet? One thing is for sure; a career is no longer something you should fall into. These days you should seriously consider your skills, traits and interests when deciding which career routes to pursue. We look at some of the traits of people who want to make a difference and five of the top creative careers.

volunteer community 

5 signs and traits of people who want to make a difference

There are lots of theories out there about altruism and whether or not any actions can be truly altruistic but that doesn’t detract from the vast numbers of people for whom making a difference to someone else’s life is an overriding motivation. If you are someone who wants to make a difference, you probably already have hobbies that allow you to show your caring side and you are not going to be satisfied with a job that keeps you away from people. A career choice that plays to your strengths will involve caring and may well relate to community services. This is one of Australia’s growth areas so there are lots of job opportunities out there. Before you decide on the right career for you, take a closer look at our 5 top signs and traits of people who want to make a difference. 

  1. You find yourself thinking about how your actions will affect others more often than you think about how they will affect you.
  2. You go home feeling good after a day that involves helping someone. Your favourite hobbies all reflect this.
  3. You are the first to volunteer for tasks, particularly those that other people don’t want to do.
  4. In a crowd, you find it easy to spot the person who needs help, and you are quick to offer it.
  5. You have sometimes gone hungry because you have shared your lunch with someone else.

5 career advantages to being a person who wants to make a difference

If you are someone who wants to make a difference, you are likely to have valuable people skills and a very employable desire to please. There are some other aspects to your caring character however that will appeal to prospective employers and help you find the right career for you that will play to your strengths. Altruism, it would appear, is a great characteristic when it comes to employability. 

  1. People who want to make a difference tend to be proactive. They see opportunities to do something, particularly if it will make someone else’s day easier, and they take them.
  2. Altruistic people often possess a level of self-confidence that will make them happy to tackle new roles and take on new responsibilities.
  3. People who want to make a difference are usually community-minded. Their workplace and colleagues are important to them, as is a meaningful career.
  4. Altruistic people are not too worried about the opinions of others. They are extraverts who know who they are and how they fit into their workplace.
  5. People who want to make a difference tend to be conscientious. This leads to them being highly organised with a keen eye for details and a high sense of personal integrity.

colleagues working in the office 

5 of the best careers for people who want to make a difference

You understand that you can’t change the whole world but you would like to be able to go to sleep each night knowing that you have made a difference, altruism is important to you. We have great news! There are lots of careers, particularly community services careers that will play to your strengths and allow you to make the most of your caring personality. If you want to find out more about careers in the caring sector, check out our ‘Quick Career Guide to Community Services’. If you are looking for the right career for you, consider some of our suggestions below.

1. Make a difference - careers in counselling

Counsellors work with people through a variety of therapies, helping them to understand and deal with emotional and often difficult issues. Counsellors tend to be good listeners, have a strong desire to help other people and may have hobbies that involve responding to requests for help, but counselling qualifications are also a vital element of this caring career. The predicted future growth for counsellors is ‘very strong’.

Course suggestions

  • A Bachelor level counselling qualification will allow you to provide effective counselling services to those in the community who require it. We recommend our Bachelor of Applied Social Science (Counselling). (085175G)
  • Our Diploma of Counselling (CHC51015) will provide a foundation for work within the counselling community and further study to Bachelor level.

2. Make a difference - careers in social work

Social workers work with people in different sections of the community including those with youth, family and drug and alcohol issues. Related qualifications are available at all levels but social workers are generally qualified to Bachelor level. The predicted future growth for social workers is ‘very strong’.

Course suggestions

  • For an entry-level route into working with people in the community we would recommend our Certificate II in Community Services (CHC22015)
  • Our Diploma of Community Services (CHC52015) offers the opportunity to study one of three elective specialisations from, Social Housing, Case Management and Statutory and Forensic Child, Youth and Family Welfare, as well as core units.

3. Make a difference - careers in personal care work

Personal care work isn’t just about working with the aged but Australia’s aging population does mean that the requirement for aged and disabled carers has grown and is currently showing a ‘very strong’ predicted future growth.

Course suggestions

  • Our Certificate III in Individual Support (CHC33015) has been specifically tailored to give those who want to provide individual support in either community or residential settings the skills and basic knowledge they need.
  • If you are looking to work in personal care work at a supervisory or managerial level our Advanced Diploma of Community Sector Management (CHC62015) will prepare you for job roles such as community services manager and centre manager.

4. Make a difference - careers in naturopathy

Naturopaths make a difference to other people and show their caring side through a range of natural therapies and treatments. Interest in more holistic approaches to health have led to a demand for complementary health therapists and the role is showing a predicted future growth of ‘strong’.

Course suggestions

5. Make a difference - careers in marketing, social media and event management

As well as being embedded in corporate marketing strategies, digital technology is also playing a big part in the success of not for profit organisations. If you are a caring, altruistic type with both a conscience and a keen set of creative media skills, the right career for you might be in social media support for charities or not for profit organisations, especially if social media is already one of your hobbies. The future growth for advertising and marketing professionals is currently showing as ‘strong’. Charities and not-for-profit organisations also need to raise money for their causes, and one main avenue of fundraising is through the heroic efforts of events managers.

Course suggestions

  • If you want to dip your toes into the world of digital and social media marketing without committing to a long course, we recommend our Social Media Short Course.
  • If you want to learn how to gain a deeper understanding of marketing performance and effectiveness, take a look at our Diploma of Social Media Marketing (10118NAT)
  • Our Diploma of Event Management (SIT50316) is a great way to get knee-deep in the NFP sectors that are keeping many charities doing the good work that they do.

fundraising event 

I am someone who wants to make a difference, what are my other options?

If the suggested careers and courses above don’t appeal to you, don’t despair. There are lots of other careers out there that will allow you to satisfy your need to be caring and play to your strengths. Our article on ‘Online Courses to Accelerate Your Career in 2018’ might give you some more ideas and help you to find the right career for you.

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