What’s the Difference Between a Job and a Career?

Think back to when you were in college.

You were young, and most likely broke at the time.

You had dreams for your life, and ideas for what you wanted your world to be filled with for your future.

Although you had all these elaborate dreams –you needed to make money somehow. Although it may not have been your dream job, you probably took up a job here and there doing almost anything.

The jobs you had back then were not about building anything or gaining real experience –it was just a means to a paycheck.

Now that you are older, is your money mindset the same? Are you still working a job just for a paycheck, or are you using your job as a stepping stone to build something that really matters to you?

   The Difference B  etween a Job and a Career

   The Difference Between a Job and a Career

The terms “Job” and “Career” are used interchangeably, but could not be any more different.

A job is a gig that earns you nothing more than a paycheck. Short and simple. A career, however, has significance to the job holder. A career is a pathway that is made up a series of jobs that serve as stepping stones to get you to an ultimate goal –your dream job.

A job is just one single step on the path that is a career.

How to Turn Your Job into a Career

For some, a gig as a receptionist may be just a job.

The person who holds that gig may hate the responsibilities they hold, and feel that the role is beneath them. For this person, their role as a receptionist is very much a job. A means to a paycheck. But there is one important detail that is worth examining: where are they a receptionist at?

To the right person, that same role of receptionist may be a stepping stone on the path that is their career.

Let’s say this receptionist gig is for a marketing firm, and the receptionist has a dream of one day becoming a creative director for that same marketing firm. This job as a receptionist is now a stepping stone for their career!

If your dream job is currently held by someone in the building who you can reach out to and interact with and learn from, then that role of receptionist (or whatever job you may currently hold) is merely a stepping stone to getting you closer to the dream job you really want.

Does this mean you must love being a receptionist in the meantime? Not necessarily, but if you work hard and get noticed, then you can begin making moves out of reception and onto the current creative director’s team –and one day into the role of creative director yourself.



It’s all about building something with every job you take. Each job moving you in one general direction to reach your specific goal.

Make each job you take pull you closer and closer to your dream job. This is the difference between a job and a career.