Mid-Career Crisis: How to Address

Published on September 21, 2019

“Mid-career crisis is the feeling of being lost; in terms of time, direction, efforts, dreams and aspirations. It occurs after some years of experience (probably when the comfort zone is disturbed). It can also be a state of looking at career in perspective with a consolidation approach. Also, it is an opportunity for a few to play a bigger game in the remaining years of life, aiming for self-actualization.” – Dr.Nandakishore Rathi

Mid-life career crisis is a stage in career that everyone encounters. This generally use to happen between 40-55 years of age till late 90s but has shifted to around 32-42 because of fast-paced and uncertain industry environment. Another reason is, wrongly chosen career options (based on external factors). In this stage, employees find it difficult to adjust their life according to present situation. During this phase, one goes through number of experiences, such as:

(a). Fear of lost youth and missed opportunities (b). Awareness of aging and mortality (c). Failure to accomplish significant dreams (d). Imbalance between work and family commitments (e). Reality check on illusions that dominated early career decisions

He/she may experience competition from more energetic, ambitious and highly educated younger crowd, and feel defensive and inferior. Some may experience technical or managerial obsolescence. There is a sense of recognition that one has reached a plateau, and the future looks gloomy. But the above is true in case of individuals wherein the education and the work-role has been rightly chosen, and he/she has been in a comfort zone so far. Also, one was able to do the work irrespective of passion & fitment. For those with wrongly chosen career options the situation is more critical; almost like feeling lost, frustrated, pointless and extremely feared. Highly successful and ambitious ones may feel guilty of sacrificing family relationships for achieving success in career: breaks ups, ignoring children’s development, not spending time with parents etc. (bahut badi keemat).

To address mid-career crisis, most people look for quick-fix solutions by pursuing higher education, online certifications and courses (jidhar scope jyada hai). Some exhibit burst of ambition (I am ready to do any course or amount of hard work to earn Rs.1 Cr p.a.-types) to fulfil unmet ambitions, while others reduce involvement in work and suddenly become family-friendly.

At organization-level, the HR department can play important role in identifying such employees in early stage of crisis and help them with counselling and adopting other processes & tools. If the employee is willing to change his overall line of work, has required qualifications & experience to do alternate jobs, and if the organization has such vacancies, HR can encourage employees to take new challenges. Many times, employees are unsure about their future in their organisation (as the organization itself is in a shaky boat), and this results in mid-career crisis.

At individual level, one can address this crisis, based on identification of the real issue. Look at the following situations (determinants) of mid-career crisis:

  • 1. Job Fitment: In case you are experiencing a misfit with the work that you are doing. The misfit may be due to past mistake of ‘accidental degree’ and ‘available job options’. If you feel that you actually don’t like your work (and you have been adjusting or compromising with it so far), then you need to seriously identify your right Job-fit options and correct yourself; earlier the better.
  • 2. Culture Fitment: If your values are confronting with organizational culture, and your personality with the specific industry environment (e,g. media vs retail vs manufacturing), then a different kind of correction is needed. May be like same role but in a different industry.
  • 3. Opportunity Fitment: In case you have been satisfied with the current role but feel that there is fast emerging and better sector that you are sure you are good at, then you can think of changing to such industry/role with appropriate transition strategy
  • 4. Lack of Expert Identity: If you feel that the work experience you have undertaken so far has not shaped you as an expert, then you need to get serious about identifying the right role & industry, with which you intellectually & emotionally connect. This will make you an expert and grow faster. Don’t take courses/certifications to adjust with wrong work role (or address the panic). More certifications & courses in CV means ‘over academic’ and probably ‘diluted focus’.
  • 5. Self-development: If you have been doing well as an individual contributor (IC), and started facing issues after becoming a manager, then you need to look at whether you are trainable in the required areas, or you can’t change yourself much from what you are. Managerial responsibility involves people management, accountability and inter-personal sensitivity. There may be other developmental areas as well as per your specific profile.
  • 6. Self-assessment: Most researchers & experts recommend this to address mid-career crisis. The crisis, according to them, is basically a result of lack of self-awareness (who you really are) or industry-awareness (how things happen in industry). One needs to undertake self-assessment on values, interests, personality, talents etc. But more importantly, all the energies in you need to be understood and connected. It answers almost all mid-career issues in terms of career direction and self-development. One can seek an expert help for the same (I consider myself as one ( :


People considering mid-career change also need to look at the following factors:

(i) Impact of the change on family (ii) Short-term salary set-back for long-term gain (iii) Identity crisis among friends, relatives and others (iv) Time required to build the image in the new area (v) Psychological setback for a short duration.

Lastly, whether you want change in career or not, you need to keep in mind, that the ‘Industry 4.0’ wants a smaller number of highly productive people, who can handle uncertain situations in their work with an ease, effectiveness and perfection; basically experts. You need to identify the expert in you sooner than later, to not only remain in the employment market, but also to fulfill your dreams & aspirations.

Your Big Career Possibilities

Published on September 15, 2019

“Today, many individuals are fighting a war within themselves on 'where are their big possibilities'. Their passion, talent on one side, education & aspirations on the other. Over and above there is this competitive & turbulent world out there that decides their worth. So, one needs to drive the career by him/herself rather than being driven by the external world. If you ask a Job, you will get what the company's immediate priority is. But if you ask for a specific Responsibility (that you are confident of), you will get an opportunity to be the next level expert. So, let the remote control be with you. Find your big story through a structured & scientific process.” – Dr.Nandakishore Rathi

Ambition - settling abroad. Passion - teaching. Ambition - pursuing an MBA from top b-school. Passion - psychological counselling. We come across such situations in our life. E.g. there is this passionate writer in you, and there is an ambitious individual looking for power, quick success, and glamour. Same about a good job profile in a small company vs an ordinary profile in an MNC. The actual situations are much more complicated than those mentioned here. And there is another side to the story. A passionate writer, wanting satisfaction & success, who possess extremely high analytical & logical ability. Now, all these forces will pull you in different directions. Adding fuel to fire is Google search on different things at different time + seeking advice from friends and relatives. Or taking up unwanted courses. The result is chaos.

The big question is are we in sync with ourselves, and if so, are we in sync with the outside world. Yes, outside world, who pays, who recognizes and who influences, and who wants the best (people). The worst is still not over. The outside world was harmonious with its elements a few decades ago. Now, it has developed new demons like competition, disruption, turbulence and unpredictability. This world (paymaster) decides your worth as a beneficiary. And we can't forget that there is this automation, IoT, AI, and Robotics out there.

So, basically if the problem definition is 'how do I become highly successful by writing stories', and 'settle abroad'. Here, writing stories is a passion. It is a spiritual journey of your imagination, probably supported by the required talent & skills. This is pure bliss. But we start contaminating it with 'abroad, money, settling and hurry'. The result is neither Joy nor Achievement. The vision is blurred because other media interfered with it. You probably have a Javed Akthar, Chetan Bhagat or J K Rowling in you. But to be this, you need enjoy the journey of writing . . . you may or may not reach their level of success for various reasons, (or may probably be better than them), but you will definitely be happy & contended. It is better to be a happy writer than to be a frustrated engineer; or an impactful trainer than an average programmer.

So, identify & understand your area of creative comfort and super expertise. Your big possibilities are hidden around it.

क्योंकि.. . डर के आगे जीत है!

Published on November 20, 2018

Good teacher is the one who is effective in teaching and is knowledgeable about the subject matter. But despite good teachers why some students do so poorly in their academics? This may possibly be for 2 reasons: (1). The student in question may be a non-academic type (more practical type), and (2). He doesn't take the study-part of the school so seriously. But despite all this, he has to secure marks at least to pass the exams.

Today, we say that students have lots of stress, and that's true. Please refer the image below from the Common-Wealth conducted survey in cities and counties around Taiwan, from 2500 junior high school students.

You will observe that 67% stress is due to exam & parent pressure, and merely 6.9% is on account of Teacher's Demands. Now, refer the following image from the same source.

You will observe that 80% teaching happens through lecture-method; may be with an objective of 'syllabus completion'. Now, look at the following 2 images (Image courtesy: https://goo.gl/Lx4xVy and https://goo.gl/bt3xUs)

This indicates that if a student is only 'pressurized' by parents, exams and marks, they may develop high anxiety, depression or violent behavior. This is because no one is working on the solution (by taking the specific needs of the student into account). But despite having an effective teacher, many students are not doing well, probably because; the teacher cannot be so 'individualized/customized' in their teaching approach. Thanks to those schools that are trying to address this.

This indicates that if a student is only 'pressurized' by parents, exams and marks, they may develop high anxiety, depression or violent behavior. This is because no one is working on the solution (by taking the specific needs of the student into account). But despite having an effective teacher, many students are not doing well, probably because; the teacher cannot be so 'individualized/customized' in their teaching approach. Thanks to those schools that are trying to address this.

  • Type-1 Parent:The School Needs to Make My Child Excel but Without Exerting Any Pressure/Stress on Them (as they pay hefty fee).
  • Type-2 Parent: They Neither Want High Marks, Nor the Child to be Scolded/ Pressurized for the Same.
  • Type-3 Parent: Highly Demanding with an Authoritarian and Watch-dog Approach towards Their Child and School to Make them Excel at Any Cost.

Before concluding, I would like to recall Aamle Sir from Zilla Parishad High School in a small town in Maharashtra, where I studied till 10th Std. He was our Maths teacher. His teaching methodology was ''extreme passion" and expectation was "High Attention". He was very loud, energetic and use to move in the entire class (of 60 students) back-n-forth. Most importantly: he use to teach a concept followed by 2-3 examples with intense approach. After this, he use to write a problem on the board and ask a random student to solve/describe the steps. If a student is not able to answer, he use to give nicely on the delicate palm with a wooden Camlin 12"scale. Though I did not like him during those days, and don't advocate his hitting-part at all, the fact is "I use to have goose-bumps, whenever we use to have his class. All the students use to come well-prepared for his class. I feel, he has done justice to his job and our learning.

Even if we go by the above research-based findings, some stress needs to be induced among students to make them pay attention & be alert about the topic being taught for the learning to be effective. Some call them as Bad-Teacher (I use to call Aamle sir a Danger-Teacher - with all due respect). I feel, such Bad Teachers should be welcomed by parents, at least for not-so-motivated, and cool kind of students. We need to have teachers who can generate enough stress to move them from "Sleep Mode" to "Alert-n-Attentive Mode".

Since, teachers are experts of teaching techniques and child psychology, they are more effective in inducing positive stress than others. Secondly, teachers have more influence on students than parents in this regard. Thirdly, this activity has more impact in a classroom-setting than in a home environment.

So, can the parents be more realistic about their expectations from their child (as per their abilities and interests), and can we empower schools and teachers to demanding and let them do what best suits the child?

Disclaimer: The 'quality & effectiveness of teaching' is a very vast topic. I just tried to highlight a small part of it, applicable only to a small cross-section of students. The views expressed are my personal and not of my organization).

How Many Know Their Package?

Published on January 13, 2018

All people having a job strive to get into the next level of growth. It may be in terms of quality of work, level of responsibility or increase in pay-package. When 3500 million people with job (across globe), aspire to grow in their career, only a few realize their dream; that is because of 'self-awareness' and 'work-awareness'. They are, either institutively or through a 'mentor' understand 'who they are' and 'what kind of industry & job' is right for them. They know what kind talent they possess, what kind of work they enjoy and what kind of 'expert' they can become.

An expert is a person, "who solves complex problems in a particular kind of work/industry/domain consistently & repeatedly, with ease, effectiveness and happiness"

    Following factors make a person an expert:

  • 1. Awareness of one's natural talent (what he/she is best at).
  • 2. Awareness of the deep-rooted interest (what he/she enjoys doing)
  • 3. Knowledge of the subject matter in the area of interest
  • 4. Work experience in the right kind of role & industry
  • 5. Small & big success stories in the day-to-day (right kind of) work
  • 6. People's acceptance, appreciation & recognition for one's work

All the above happens when one looks at CAREER from a long-term perspective and develops a clear VISION on intended career path (as against short-sighted path/decisions). All the above factors, when connected well, create a 'package (mastery)' which gets you a good PACKAGE (pay) that you truly deserve, because only experts are recruited for higher-level responsibilities and more critical work.

Without rightly crafted and executed 'CAREER-PLAN', career becomes too many ups and downs, finally resulting in a plateau & decline. So, know your 'PACKAGE of work' to get a good 'PACKAGE of pay'.

Success = Your Type + Your Direction

Published on July 22, 2017

Success and happiness in career and life are 2 most important aspects that make them meaningful. Without willingness to passionately work and take more responsibility, no one can grow and make-a-great-career-story. We have a tendency to avoid certain type of work and welcome some other kind. What we avoid is what we dislike, and feel uncomfortable with; what we welcome is what we enjoy and feel at peace. E.g. some CEO may like to engage more with technology rather than marketing or finance. Some professor may enjoy more of publishing papers rather than correcting question papers. Some actors feel delighted with theatre rather than films. Some technologist may like to innovate only when it is addressing an individual's pain and not for other application.

This subtle differentiation between people's dissatisfaction, joy, delight, irritation or fulfillment (with various work-related activities) is due to dynamic interaction between various factors such as their passion, interest, work styles, work personality, competencies, education, social factors, experiences, exposure etc. Its your 'package' that you need to holistically apply in the direction that you are passionate about.

The super-success-stories of some people like Steve Jobs, Amitabh Bachchan, Virat Kohli, Javed Akhtar, Chetan Bhagat, Narendra Modi, APJ Kalam, MK Gandhi, Kapil Sharma is the result of the application of their self-package in the right direction.

So, ask yourself what is your 'package' as a one-piece 360 degree USP, and then explore where it has to be applied in the most emerging field of your passionate interest. Once you do this, no one is your competitor. Happy Career!

Joint Entrance for Some, Junky for Others...

Published on June 16, 2017

If qualified the JEE/CET, Congratulations! If not, still Congratulations; because there is still a great career waiting for you. If you know your unique combination of Talent-Passion-Interest, then no one can stop you from being as great as the Indian Cricket Team or Late Dr. APJ.

Getting admission to IITs or NITs is NOT a passport to Happy & Successful career. Getting high rank in Entrance Exam is only reflection of one's academic ability & hard work, nothing much. The real long-term success depends on 'how you handle challenges in real-work situations. Even after IIT/NIT degree people had a frustrating experience of studying technology or doing technology-related work. They landed in a career that proved JUNKY (useless) for them.

We at Loratis SetMyCareer evaluate your true potential beyond your entrance-score and exactly tell you the long-term academic and professional possibilities that are right for you. Our experts will have a video call with you, after the online assessment tests, to understand you thoroughly and guide you appropriately.

You are Great; the only thing is you need to know, you are great for 'what degree' and 'what work'. Don't get nervous if you are not getting admission to a branded college, and don't be too happy if you are getting one. The real thing is 'in what kind of work you will be respected as an EXPERT' and 'paid like a STAR'. IIT/NIT degree. Is it not better to be a best 'Writer' than an average 'Engineer ', the best Accountant than to be an average Microbiologist', the best Automobile engineer than an average Software developer? Remember, people best at their work always Rock, the rest of them Flop! All the Best.

“Only 11k get admission to IITs against many lakhs who aspire. They work very hard to get in. Nothing much happens by getting into IITs or NITs unless you really are a technology-material for the long term. Without IITs also you can be Happy & Successful”. – Dr.Nandakishore Rathi

Try . . . but Don't Create Panic

Published on April 8, 2017

Scoring marks happens when (1) you have high academic ability (ability to read/understand quickly, and write in exam) and (2) when you study subjects that you understand well as per your passion & talent; e.g. interest in science with high logical ability gets you better marks. If you also have high academic ability, you get still better marks. Some students, even after choosing right degree, do not score good marks if they do not have high academic ability.

But marks do not have much to do in one's long term success. It depends on if you are able to do your work with Speed, Ease and Perfection, even if you are from an ordinary college. Someone may not have high academic ability but may have high potential for some kind of work. If he/she chooses that kind of work, they go far ahead of others. You may get a good rank to get admission to medicine or engg with high academic ability, but you will become a good doctor or engineer, only if you have passion & talent for the same. The only thing that helps with high marks is getting admission to a better college; but college-brand doesn't play much role in one's long-term success & happiness. To discuss more, meet one of our experts to get your Passion & Talent identified and set your career on right career path. Call: 080-65831412 or 7676529777. Best Wishes!

Before It Is Too Late. .

Published on September 18, 2016

"I am doing all this for you (my children)", is often said by most of the parents who are not able to spend time with their children. Their 'personal ambitions' actually are their priorities. They hardly understand their children's world, and often forget their uniqueness in terms of their preferences, likes, dislikes, personality, passion etc.

When I approached various schools for a free talk to parents on 'how to make right choice for their children', the Principals almost unanimously said "it is very difficult to get parents for such talks/events, except during PTA (parents-teachers meet)". The issue is, few things are time-centric and can't be inculcated or developed as and when you want, (except the Hitler-way, where the results might be materially good but spiritually damaging). What I mean is, you may force a child through coaching & discipline to complete a degree at the cost of his low self-esteem.

However, if the objective is that 'I want to see my child happy & successful', then one shouldn't over emphasize on 'marks, money and comparison'. As far as a child's 'monitory value' (ability to earn by ethical means) is concerned, let the market (employers/customers) decide it. You can just do the following 3 things to achieve the above objective. In fact these are the only things you have control upon, if one starts early:

1. Nurture Right Values

Remember, your child imitates and gets influenced by you. They perceive your behaviour as a 'rule'. It is, therefore, important 'how you want to behave' based on 'how you want him/her to behave'. Give them the values (beliefs) that will develop their life - personal & professional. Once this is done, then they will be able to steer without landing in trouble. Some such values are:

  • a. Respect for every individual
  • b. Fairness & clarity on financial matters
  • c. Fear of the law in all walks of life
  • d. No-exploitation of the weaker
  • e. No undue favours & corruption
  • f. Gender equality
  • g. Helping/contributing for a good cause
  • h. Srong work ethics
  • i. Team work etc

If you nurture these kinds of values in your child, just don't have to worry about him/her. They will not land in trouble and will be well accepted members of the group/society.

2. Give Right Career Path

Please don't decide your child's career path through the lens of 'your own career' or 'scope for an X career', or 'a friend/relative's career'. Rather find 'where is scope for him/her' based on their uniqueness, behaviour, talents & passion. Consider these inputs to make right choices. If a child is not interested in, say, Commerce, then know the reasons. If he/she justifies it, then don't say 'Arts is not a degree', 'What will you do with Arts'. Also, don't force 'Engineering' unless he has the required talent & equally matching interest. You, as a parent, should 'help' him/her make right choices through right professional help.

3. Develop Great Habits

As a parent, one of the most difficult parts to develop among children is a set of 'good habits'. Today's children, as I understand from most parents are 'IT savvy', 'loners at home, but are very interactive with friends, very talented but not hard working and so on'. Developing good habits can start as early as 6-7 years of age, but don't overdo in those areas that they resist. You need to do it very emphatically and not forcefully. Some of the habits that come to my mind are:

  • a. Regular physical exercises & yoga
  • b. Reading/watching news
  • c. Meeting & interacting new people
  • d. Asking questions
  • e. Eating home-cooked & healthy food
  • f. Being neat & clean etc.

In a nutshell, DON'T MAKE ROADS FOR THEM, SHOW THE PATH AND LET THEM MAKE THE ROAD

'PASSION' FLOWER and PASSIONATE CAREER

Published on July 29, 2016

Last week, I was searching for the dictionary meaning 'passion'. The first one, in most of the sources, was 'sufferings of Lord Jesus' during Crucifixion. I was bit shocked. Other meaning was 'intense, strong or uncontrollable feelings'.

I also came across an image of a flower called 'passion flower'. I got to know why it is named so. The flower compares to Lord Jesus's Crucifixion. Jesus had 10 disciples without Peter & Judas (exactly 10 petals/sepals in the flower), had a crown of thorns on his head when crucified (double row of filaments in the flower), had 5 wounds on his body, and 3 nails were used while Crucified (see other parts of the flower in the pic above).

So, if passion means suffering, then why do people say 'we should identify and follow our passion while choosing a career/profession? Does it mean that we should 'suffer? I would like to put it little differently. Some 'sufferings' literally are huge pain. No one wants them; e.g. suffering due to health issues, hunger, poverty etc. On the other hand, some 'sufferings' are intentionally embraced or chosen; e.g. a boxer likes Mohd. Ali practicing boxing for hours till he fells down, or a researcher like Edison, struggling to find answers to research-questions through multiple rounds of experiments, trials-errors, and data crunching till they are satisfied.

The second type of 'suffering' described above is a positive one, because you are willing to go through the pain of intense efforts to meet your uncontrollable desire for a particular dream or satisfy your curiosity. You are getting a sense of fulfillment through this. It is no less than attaining a high level of spiritual experience where the body, mind and spirit get aligned in one direction for a bigger purpose.

Putting this in context; people who choose their work with a purpose much bigger than just earning money, experience this state of mind. They understand themselves (values, talents, behaviours etc), and choose an activity (work) that is close to their heart. They dream big in terms of their contribution and in terms of larger social impact. They work on it like a mission.

They suffer on account of various obstacles and challenges during this journey, but they don't want to give up. They fell but rise again. They fail but finally succeed. In such cases, passion is the 'intense feeling' that one cannot control because one feels so connected with it.

Lord Jesus or Lord Ram went through so much pain (passion) because they wanted to give some message to mankind in the larger interest. They could have chosen the path of 'non-suffering (comfort zone)' but they chose to suffer (follow their passion) for a bigger cause. They never repented for their decision because it was a conscious decision. It was call of the heart. One becomes God (of some activity or work), when he/she pursues it in an area of his/her intellectual or emotional connect.

MBA is not an Ambulance Service?

Published on July 3, 2016

I am meeting quite a lot of young, dynamic and talented people of following 3 categories: 1. Currently working, and having a few months or years of experience 2. Have taken a career break, and want to restart their career, and 3. Graduating or just graduated youngsters.

They have a very clear-cut question 'Should I pursue an MBA? After probing a bit, I try to understand the 'drive or reason' behind pursuing an MBA. To my surprise, there is no serious reason behind it. The basic assumption is one or more of the follows: a. 'I am not growing in career'. b. 'I am nowhere compared to my friends' achievements'. c. 'My parents want me to do it'. d. 'MBAs grow faster than those without it'. e. 'I am not liking my job', and so on..

Basically, they look at MBA as the light at-the-end-of-the-tunnel. The tunnel of dissatisfaction, non-achievements, restlessness for faster growth, need for early social recognition etc. Thanks to aggressive B-school advertising budgets. Such candidates find it an easily available commodity, in all forms, shapes, sizes and budgets. All 4Ps of marketing perfectly balanced. Moreover, it sounds socially great 'Master of Business Administration'.

After detail analysis of the candidate's real situation, it is observed, that most of them do not require an MBA. They need to know their own world better. They need to be self-aware. They need to focus what they are really best at, and what they really enjoy doing.

In fact in 2 cases - a BBA & an MBA - the candidates wanted to quit the course as they just were not able to relate to 'management'. There world was so different. Once we make them realize whether it serves the purpose 'for them', they back out and focus on areas that they really need to focus upon, such as: right role, right competence, right expectations from the self, how people grow in organization etc.

In a nutshell, MBA is not required for everybody. It shouldn't be looked at like 'Personality Development (PD)' program. If it is so, it is a very highly priced PD program with 2 years of valuable investment, apart from those 5 to 18 lakhs (( :

So, one shouldn't look at an MBA as an emergency ambulance service, for the career-crisis (sometime real and sometimes socially or self-created).

I recently guided a person with technical work experience, to move successfully to HR (which, we identified as his true passion) without an MBA degree.

Degree, Job, Degree . .another Job, then What?

Published on June 25, 2016

We get a degree and then we get a job (most of the time both not chosen thoughtfully). We don't like the job some times, and change it. If we don't like that too for whatsoever reason, we take another degree, this time more optimistically (the PG), then you get a 'final job' and don't feel happy about the 'growth' or about the 'type of work' or about the 'manager'. Then what do we do? Take one more degree? or Change one more job?

Many great minds are facing this situation today, particularly in India. The fundamental question is 'are you enjoying your degree studies'. If so, then use that knowledge in your job and be an 'expert'. Take that expertise to the next level by doing great work. Your study or job, if chosen rightly, should make you feel in sync with your long term dream. Meaning, you should feel, every day, that you are inching in the right direction. You should enjoy the journey, because your dream is taking shape on this path.

If your current job is not making you feel like this, its time to introspect take a pause and ponder over your true passion, and make next right choice in line with your talent & interests (not market/scope), towards a great journey and many great destinations. The world of work belongs to those who are the best (in their field), and puts a high price-tag on them. So find 'what you are best at', and 'what you enjoy the most', so that you get noticed & rewarded for what you truly deserve.

Passion Vs Perfection

Published on June 15, 2016

Perfect people try to do everything perfectly as per the cook book recipe. They are interested in following the norms, rules, guidelines, procedures etc. They don't like ambiguity. They follow structure. They follow science.

In the context of career, if they have chosen a course as per their academic interest, they do very well in academics. At job also, they try to do everything perfectly. Here they may face problems, if they just follow the rule book. The reason being, nothing at work is as clearly defined as a subject/course in academics. Every problem and its subsequent solution is 'multi-disciplinary', requiring more than the rule book of just 'science' of the things.

However, if a person chooses the job (after right academics) as per his deep interest (passion) and personality, he is likely to be more creative in solving the issues at work that are small or big in magnitude. This is the 'right job' for him as his thinking goes beyond the 'science' of things (what) to 'art of things (why & how).

In a nutshell, 'passion' is much bigger than mere 'perfection' and hence able to address the issues that are much bigger and complex.

E.g. You can notice the difference between a person who learns classical music just out of interest (hobby), and the one who learns out of passion. The person with passion will add his 'art' (style) to the science of music and make his mark in the field of music. Moreover, he is himself enjoying the recital or playing of an instrument. He doesn't struggle to remember the notations & compositions; and focuses on being creative & innovative to the extent of writing own compositions. Similarly, a dancer who learned the 'steps' but 'not feeling the moves at the heart vs the one with passion for dance. A passionate teacher who transfers knowledge, & clarify the concepts, or a manager with real 'people orientation' vs just 'management of people'. In summary, one grows in any field to the highest level, when one is a true expert knowing multiple facets of his work (domain). Mere knowledge or skills pose a limitation for growth.