July 29, 2013,
India’s demographics for the number of women in the age group 25 to 54 years in the year 2012 is 23,50,42,251 while the number of males for the same age group is 24,90,17,538. That is, at least 49% of the Indian working age group constitutes females.
Considering this given fact, where approximately 49% of the Indian working age group constitutes of women, as well as considering the fact that India’s GDP is expected to grow at a rate of 5.7% for the year 2013-14 (RBI forecast), it is only reasonable to expect that women will play a significant role in contributing to the Indian workforce, and thereby, to the Indian economy.
A report by the Financial Express stated that India’s monthly per-capita expenditure “increased 19% annually in rural areas and 17% in urban areas” during the last 2 years (2011-13). This indicates rising level of income per household.
This is a clear indicator of the fact that household income level is increasing not just in urban India, but also in rural India. One of the main reasons that can be attributed to this is that more and more numbers of women have now started occupying the Indian workforce. The rising standard of living, the change in structure of the Indian family, the advent of education amongst women, as well as the role of media in lifting the veil off the social evils have all contributed in some way or the other to the changed mindsets towards women working in society and earning a livelihood for themselves and their families.
If you carefully look around, you will feel encouraged to see how women are taking part and leading in every walk of life as well as in the space of world of work.Be it in sports (Saina Nehwal, Sania Mirza, Mary Kom, etc), politics (Sonia Gandhi, Mamta Bannerjee, Mayawati, Renuka Chowdhary, etc), top management positions in private sector companies (Chanda Kochhar – MD & CEO - ICICI Bank, Indra Nooyi – Chairman & CEO - PepsiCo , Preetha Reddy – MD - Apollo Hospitals, Kalpana Morparia – CEO - JPMorgan India, Shobhana Bhartia – Chairperson & Editor - Hindustan Times Group, Renu Sud Karnad – MD, HDFC Bank), entrepreneurship (Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Shahnaz Husain, Vandana Luthra, Anita Roddick, Chanda Zaveri, etc), or fashion (Ritu Kumar, Rina Dhaka, Malini Ramani, Ritu Beri etc) to name a few.
Not only this, more and more women are taking up careers which were only considered to be the domain of men earlier, for example: you will now find women in the field of mechanics, aerospace, aeronautics, engineering, information technology, police forces, military, personal training, fitness, adventure sports, and many others.
This very clearly establishes the fact that times have drastically changed and today, there is no such thing as “safe careers for women” or “right careers for women”, etc.
Every profession is equally right for a woman as much as it is for a man. However, when people search for or ask advise on what is the “Best career for girls”, what they need to understand is that any given career can be “best” or “right” only when the person’s capability matches with the job. Only when you enjoy your work, that is, you feel the joy to go to your workplace every day, or, you don’t feel work like it’s some heavy duty job, you feel more engaged, you start gaining knowledge, start gaining wisdom and start doing well in life, only then can you call it the best suited job or the “right career”. This only happens when one knows her strength in aptitudes and personality traits and uses them intelligently to craft her career with robost planning.
This win win situation would come to everybody who shows enough smartness to know her strength as early as possible and uses them to match the market reality.
How does one know that one is really happy with one’s job?
There are times when even if one has a very tight schedule for everything, still one manages to call or meet the person whom one really likes. Likewise, even if one is in a bad situation of life, one tends to still keep on working because one gets tremendous amount of happiness out of it.
Having said that all careers can be good careers for both boys and girls, however, keeping in mind the need of women to have work life-balance or to have an effective lifestyle, there are certain careers that girls can choose which can help them in easily managing their homes along with their careers without much work stress. These include –
- Chartered Accountancy
- Writing / Author / Digital writing
- Creative pursuits
- Human Resources
- Advertising / PR
- Food technology
- Agriculture Science
- Social Work
- Information Science and Technology
- Administrative and Government Services
It is very important to note here that just because the above mentioned careers have been labeled as the best careers for girls, this, however, does not mean that all these careers will suit all girls. As had been mentioned before, a career can be called “best” only to the extent that it matches the capabilities of the individuals. If a woman does not have strong financial ability then she simply cannot make a good CA. Similarly, if a woman does not have people skills in her then she cannot simply make a good HR. If a woman has no good writing skills or creative thinking, then she just cannot become a good writer.
That is why it is very important that instead of choosing a career based on how comfortable or how easy it is to do, one must first understand what one’s inherent strengths and capabilities are, and thereby choose a career which matches one’s aptitude, personality and interests. This can be easily understood with the help of an aptitude test and personality test.