Many people don’t give much thought to their careers. They continue along, taking the next logical position, doing what “everyone expects” them to do next. Eventually, they realize they don’t really like what they are doing, but aren’t quite sure how they got there, or how to fix it.
An article entitled A Different Animal Seeks The Chief Executive Post talks about some of the reasons for this. Often the next job up the ladder is quite different, and requires skills and abilities that may not have been part of the previous job. The most obvious change is when one moves from the lab bench into management, but every transition has some elements of change.
Another, more science related article on this topic can be found at Top of the Heap.
As you review your career goals for the new year, don’t just set your sites on the next obvious step. Resolve to spend some time finding out what is actually involved at the next level, so you can make an informed decision as to whether or not that is what you want. If you’re going to be doing something different, make sure it’s what you want, not what everyone else expects of you.