Women in unconventional careers

Women in unconventional careers

Gone are the days when teaching or nursing was considered the best career options for women. Today, womenfolk have gone out of their way to prove themselves in fields that were traditionally known as men’s domain. It is no wonder then that we find females in the position of bus conductors, real estate brokers, service station attendants, pilots, cab drivers, detectives among others. Career choice should not after all be influenced by gender and one should have the liberty to follow one’s dreams.

A female real estate broker says, “When I started some five years back many of my friends and relatives discouraged me. The common idea was that it is a profession tailor-made for guys. Of course I had to struggle initially. People did not take me seriously and tried to take advantage of me. When I took my clients around to show residential or commercial premises during odd hours some even tried to physically harass me. I felt frustrated but did not give up.” A conductor in a Volvo bus in Bangalore echoes the same thoughts. She says, “Initially passengers would be taken by surprise when I used to go around collecting fares from them. Today, with some other girls in the same position the scene has become different. The mindset of the public has also changed for the better which has made life a lot easier these days.”

Times are surely changing. With more and more women stepping into such careers that were traditionally male oriented, the mental make-up of the society is fast changing. People are accepting women in unconventional roles easily. Advices a career counselor, “When you decide to take up an unconventional job you have to be of strong character and full of determination. Even if the work is physically or intellectually challenging, you have to hang in there and prove your worth. The growth path in non-traditional careers is unpredictable. You have to prepare yourself mentally for the same. Remember by choosing a path that is less travelled, you will open the doors to many others who perhaps lacked the courage to do so. That in itself is a big contribution.”

There is no denying the fact that there is a huge opportunity in pursuing a career away from the stereotyped ones. Of course, there may be some initial hurdles but once you cross them only the sky will be the limit for you.

 

- Ranjita Chattopadhyay (views expressed in the article are that of the author)

 



 

 

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