Is There A Difference Between A Job And A Career?


I encourage teens to do what they love.  I believe that teens should do what they love when it comes to hobbies, community services, and employment.  So, when asked the question is there a difference between a job and a career my answer is a resounding yes.

A job is what you do to earn money but a career is a series of connected employment endeavors. Let me use myself as an example.  Since graduating from college many years ago I have been employed in various organizations working with various populations – families, pre-school and elementary school, pre-teens, teens and teen parents.  I have also volunteered in many different capacities, and just like my employment opportunities, they all fit perfectly in my social work career path.  All of my jobs have led me further down the same career track.


While both a job and a career provide experience and learning to advance your future, in many instances a job is something agreed to do for a payment whether a person enjoys doing it or not.  I believe that a person pursuing a career is more concerned with personal satisfaction. From the mind of billionaire Warren Buffet, “I think you’re out of your mind if you keep taking jobs that you don’t like because you think it will look good on your resume.”


While both a job and a career are a means to earn money for family, education, travel, etc. and both may allow for networking with his colleagues to create further opportunities, I view a career as the pursuit of a lifelong ambition or the progression towards lifelong goals.


I’m going to conclude this blog with words of wisdom from Steve Jobs: “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.” Agreed!



Nicki Sanders, MSW, Chief Visionary Officer

The Teen Toolbox provides youth portfolio development and civic engagement and academic enrichment opportunities to help teens set goals for life after high school and create a road map to reach those goals through its PACKAGED FOR SUCCESS™ Programs.

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