Is a job a career or a career a job? The differences between a job and a career may not always be clear. But does it really matter? Yes, it does.

Most people do not take the time to decide what their career path is therefore spending their entire career doing one job. A career path is one thing anyone serious about their professional life needs to give much thought to. 

What Is The Difference Between a Job and a Career?

What Is The Difference Between a Job and a Career

The Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary defines a job as regular work that a person does to earn money. In contrast, a career is a series of jobs that one does during their working life, especially if they get better jobs and earn more money. 

A job could also mean a specific piece of work required to be done as a duty or for a specific fee, while a career is the general progression of one’s working or professional life. 

Before you read on, think about this question, which will you consider planning your professional goals. Your job or your career?

Although we earn income from both a job and a career, a job, whether full-time or part-time, is short-term oriented. People move on with their lives once they get what they want out of a job. Mostly, the aim is to make money for another productive venture.

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1. A Career is a long-term Passion.

A career is instead determined based on one’s passions. For this reason, it is a long-term professional journey for the individual. Any step taken in the course of life is to build their career. So when an individual embarks on a journey to their professional goals and ambitions, such a person is embarking on their career journey.

2. Jobs are More Specific Sets of Duties

A job can also be contract-based, where an employee agrees to work on a project for a specific period for wages. Once the project is completed, the job ends. On the other hand, one’s career never ends unless one resigns or dies. A career is built daily out of the individual’s decisions concerning his or her life or career. Because it is something you envision, you work at it consciously and consistently for positive results.

Considering the career you want to build, you can decide to take up several jobs to acquire the relevant skills to help develop your career.  You can also turn a job into a career path once you’re certain it is what you want to do for the rest of your life.

People also take up jobs because they want to save money for another venture. With this, you are given responsibility for the job you’ve taken up because you have the relevant skills. However, since you aim to gather money for another venture, you resign once you make enough money. As a result, you may not be fulfilled in your job because it might not be something you’d want to pursue later in the future.

Again, most jobs focus on getting tasks done immediately. I’ve realized that jobs are sustained by the employees’ ability to perform specific functions once they report to work. For these reasons, they are noted for hourly, daily, or weekly wages. Once you sign up for it, you have to be there to do your bit. 

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3. Careers Are Built Over a Long Period

In contrast, a career takes time to be built. While working on what you want to develop, you can take up courses or other jobs to grow your skills, network with others in and out of your circles, and probably engage in productive projects to build your brand. Getting a task done in building a career does not yield significant results instantly. It takes some tasks done over time for meaningful results. 

A career fair may expose you to what a career path chosen entails and how to get there. In a career fair, people share stories about their career journey to encourage others to embark on the same journey. Here, you could network with others who would help make your journey more meaningful. Ideas are exchanged, questions are answered, and paths are created to help attendees. 

One could leave a job fair with strong job leads or job offers. In addition, some companies may have open positions they plan to fill with the attendees they interact with. For this reason, one needs to fully prepare for such fairs since anything is possible to happen there.

4 Career Quotes To Guide You In Your Journey

Career Quotes To Guide You In Your Journey

After reading through 50 career quotes, I realized that we build our careers for ourselves and not for any other person. For this reason, everything we do must be aimed at being better tomorrow than we are today. Thus, a career is built intentionally. 

I’ll share four quotes with you.

Whatever you decide to do, make sure it makes you happy. – Paulo Coelho

Have you ever thought of what to make out of life? Life doesn’t happen; we make it through the way we live daily. What you are now is a result of what you keep doing all this while. If you decide to work on something for the rest of your life, why should it be something you’re not happy about?  Would you rather have it the other way? Think about it. 

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The future depends on what you do today. – Mahatma Gandhi

Do you have a mental picture of who you will be in the next 5, 10, or 15 years? Currently, what are you doing about it? Does what you do daily take you there?  You want it; you work for it.

If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try. – Seth Godin

How do you know you can’t if you’ve not tried your hands on it?  Be your cheerleader and keep working at it. That way, you learn from the several mistakes you make.  It is okay to fail, right?

Opportunities don’t happen, you create them.  – Chris Grosser

While you wait for what you’re waiting for, how prepared are you for it? It takes a medium to get to every destination. Sometimes, the medium doesn’t walk to you; you get it and move with it to your destination. Work on yourself so that once you get the medium, you move. 


Whether you decide to focus on your job or your career, remember this, “We don’t all love our jobs every day. And doing something you have passion for doesn’t make the work part of it any easier. It just makes you less likely to quit.”

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