Have you tried to move up in your career, but been unsuccessful? Do you feel that you are left behind while the men at your company get promoted? If this sounds like you, have you ever tried or considered a nontraditional career? Contemplate a career where only 25 percent or less of the workforce of a particular occupation comprised of women.
What are nontraditional jobs?
For women, jobs that are nontraditional include Chemist, architect, taxi driver, carpenter etc. There are hundreds of occupations that are usually considered nontraditional. Just look around yourself, probably you can determine by yourself which jobs are nontraditional.
Why Women Don’t Consider
Stereotype still exists as to what is considered “women’s work”. These stereotypes are passed along from our parents and continue with our guidance counselors and school teachers and actually ingrained in our society. Little girls rarely get gifts such as a toy chemist set, a toy truck, Lincoln Logs. Guidance counselors and teachers tend to steer girls into “Pink collar” classes and jobs. With little exposure and guidance to all of our career options, It’s a wonder in nontraditional careers there are any women.
Higher Wages and Higher Need
Many nontraditional jobs like a taxi or Uber driver pay structure are 20-30% more (and many other higher) than the traditional ones and have better career advancement opportunities and benefits. In many trades, 40-70% workers older than 45 are expected to quit their job by this year, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Department of Labors. These positions will be vacant and needed to be filled. Take a look at a job in the trades, if you are interested in working as a welder or carpenter.
What Color Is Your Parachute?
Often, money is not the only determining factor to find a satisfying career. A job where you can apply your interests and skills is most likely a top priority too. Take a look at your interests and skills; chose any of the nontraditional careers fits the bill?
Women who chose nontraditional professions often face challenges. The first one is acceptance. It’s not always easy being a trailblazer. You stick out. You don’t fit in. Once your male co-workers can see, you can do a good job and you are serious about your work, most will accept you. If you are in a “worker bee” position in your organization, but you want to achieve the position of manager, then you should take on the traits of this desired position. You want to be the best worker bee that exists in the organization and you want to be seen as someone having the intellect ability to be on the next level. I am not telling you to start acting as a manager, but it would be great being seen as a leader. Show intellect, initiative, focus, and leadership. Let others see you in a way that allows them to think that for that position you are already a perfect person. You have to prove yourself as honest, trustworthy and a person of strong ethics and values. The more successfully you can do this, the fewer others actions will affect you.
Situations that are out of your control may have an effect on people and the way they view you and your industry. Those few people that do things are exceptions. Make sure you separate yourself from the exceptions and build your own path. You must be strategic in doing so. This will allow you to shatter the glass ceiling, not just break through it.