We’ve all probably put somewhere in a cover letter or resume that we’re great with people or fantastic at customer service. In reality, working with people isn’t for everyone. It can be emotionally exhausting and often requires you to be the bigger person in times when you really wish it didn’t. Luckily there are plenty of jobs out there that allow you to avoid people all together. Or, at very least, people of the customers and clients persuasion. However, if on the off chance you are one of those people who mean it when you say you love working with people, the world is practically your oyster.
So many jobs that require you to work with people don’t require any kind of qualification. Whether you’re talking hospitality, retail or general customer service, there are an abundance of options out there that you can go in at entry level fairly easily. Working somewhere like a café or restaurant can expose you to many different people from all walks of life – particularly if the venue you work for is in a very busy location with a high turnover. The downside to hospitality work can be the intense amount of stress and high physical demands. In larger or busies establishments you will often be run off your feet and for many this can suck the rewarding part of being able to deliver a personal experience or engage with their customers. Jobs in retail or customer service (such as in a call centre) can be a lot less physically taxing and often pay more than hospitality. Another upside to this style of people working is the ‘one at a time’ nature it almost exclusively adopts. For instance, if you work behind a cash register or in a call centre on the phones, you are often only dealing with one person at a time, making it easier to spend time with them and get the part you love out of your job.
If your love of working with people also includes a love for helping or providing care there are also many options – a lot of which allow for a more engaged and ongoing contact with the same people on a regular basis. Examples include working in areas such as NDIS home care or similar to provide ongoing support to persons with a disability or perhaps the elderly. This subset of people work definitely takes a lot of compassion and patience and isn’t for everyone. However, if you are the kind of person who would enjoy having the opportunity to have an ongoing relationship with your clients this could be perfect for you. Still relatively low entry requirements, some of which you don’t need an actual qualification for. You may need certificates such as first aid or fall prevention training in order to be competitive in the job market, but this depends on the industry you go into. Somewhat similarly, you might consider a job based around little people. Childcare or early learning jobs can be extremely rewarding for some. They also take a lot of patience but also a great deal of creativity and imagination puts you in good stead. Depending at what level this too can be a fairly low requirement area to get into if you don’t count working with children and police checks etc.
If you find your love of working with people would be more rewarding if it where also intellectually challenging and diverse, you might consider entering a career such as wealth management, marketing or events planning. While each of these jobs often require a reasonable amount of tertiary study each one provides a great balance of working with customers and clients whilst also having a lot of ongoing problems that require some skills in intellectual problem solving. For instance, as a wealth manager or a marketing expert you are always focused on making sure you provide the service your client is looking for whether that is a great plan for retirement or a campaign that will lift their start up off the ground. Both these positions will require a lot of meetings with clients and often 3rd party providers or stakeholders in order to provide the service. However, outside of the peopling part there are requirements to keep up to date with trends, regulations and competitors to add the extra challenge.
Lastly, if you’re really dedicated to your education and also want to provide care and help to people, you could look to go into a medical profession. These include jobs such as doctor, surgeon, psychologist or psychiatrist along with any alternative medicine fields. Each of these roles often take a number of years and a series of placements or residencies before you will be fully qualified but for those cut out for the journey, they are very people involved roles. Working in the mental health industry is often a very lucrative avenue to go down but can also be very stressful as it is considered to be undervalued and has such a high demand for services. While a lot of western medicine is much the same, the option is there to specialise in predominantly privatised areas. Being able to support couples in their journey to parenthood right through to the IVF sex selection of their embryos would be pretty magical (as long as they are aware there’s no such thing as baby gender selection cause that’s a whole different ball game). The other perks of roles in medical fields are the options to work either as a private practice or to work in medical facilities such as hospitals. While working privately is known to bring in more cash money, perks such as hospital maintenance service can definitely make your focus on your people skills easier.
The list of jobs that allow you to work with or around people really is endless. Enjoyment of this type of work is a great way to start a career no matter what your aspirations are. The biggest downside to working with people would have to be the certainty of abuse – typically at the worst for the first jobs I mentioned in this article. Your biggest challenge is discovering what balance you want between non-stop people and solo time.