With unemployment stuck at a painful 9.1%, many Americans aren’t concerned about the prospects of landing their dream job. Any job will do.
Even though the financial hardship caused by a drastic cut or elimination of income is potentially devastating, the opportunity to change your profession is staring you in the face. Don’t just stare at the opportunity. Answer it.
A long period of unemployment is the perfect time to reflect on the characteristics of your ideal career. Which brings us to two questions:
1) What is the sweetest, “I’d sell my young to get it,” job in the world?
2) What is the worst, “you couldn’t pay me enough,” job in the world?
After spending a considerable amount of time pondering the answers to these questions, I’ve found what I think are the best and worst jobs in the world.
Worst Job – President of the United States of America
A Little Power, A Lot of Responsibility
I think it was Spiderman or Peter Parker who said, “With great power comes great responsibility.”
No, wait. Maybe it was Superman’s uncle. I can’t remember. Either way, those are wise words.
Many kids fantasize about one day leading the wealthiest country on Earth. As an adult, I know better. The problem with being president is that you have a relatively small amount of power and a ridiculous amount of responsibility.
Although many Americans believe otherwise, there’s not much the president can accomplish without the buy in of Congress – a 535 member body that makes up a significant portion of our government.
The president can veto bills he doesn’t agree with, but there’s still a possibility Congress will override his veto.
Even after the president signs a bill into law, the Supreme Court, another significant branch of government, can overturn the law if it’s declared unconstitutional.
I’ll bet most Americans can’t even tell you the names of their representatives in Congress. (I’m hardly the exception.) But we all know the president. And he’s the one we single out when we need someone to blame.
You’re Constantly Interviewing for Your Job
As president, you start your job knowing you can’t hold your position for more than two terms. Before you even begin work, you’re consumed with how you’re going to convince the people who hired you (voters) and the people who helped you get hired (donors) to let you keep your job. Often, the wants of the voters are in direct contradiction to the wants of the donors. Serving two masters is rough.
In Order to be Effective, You Have to Compromise
You’ll have to kiss a few toads, wheel and deal with the devil, and sacrifice a few causes that are important to you in order to get the really important stuff done. In most cases, you can’t unilaterally pass legislation, remember? I liken it to cutting off your fingers to save your hand. You might not want to, but you may not have any other choice.
You Need to Make Long-Term Decisions, but Are Judged Based on Short-Term Results
With such little real power, you make decisions that have a short-term positive effect on the country even if they’re bad for the country in the long run. During the first term, you do this because you want to get reelected.
Once you’re out of office, and it’s revealed the programs you supported during your short stint as president hurt the country, those who loved you will hate you.
You’re Constantly Under Attack
Many members of Congress, who you need to help you bring about positive change, never stop trying to sabotage you. They hate you either one of two ways: publicly or privately. You see, they too want to get reelected. The people who put them in office have a different set of needs than the people who put you in office.
Best Job – Super Model
Get Paid Lots of Money for Little Effort
I don’t care what anyone tells you, taking pictures and walking down a runway is NOT hard work.
As a top model, people pay you obscene amounts of cash to look beautiful. Similar to star athletes, fashion models are born with a “gift.” They’re tall, skinny, and pretty according to commonly accepted standards of beauty.
Assuming your look is in demand, in order to get paid, you have little more to do than show up. The hairstylist, makeup artist, photographer, and less attractive members of the photo shoot do the heavy lifting. You don’t even have to speak.
Travel the World on Someone Else’s Dime.
You live a fabulous life traveling to exotic locations and enjoying the world’s most popular cities while sporting the hottest fashions and hobnobbing with celebrities. You’re able to live the life many people only dream of while in your early twenties. And the best part is, you’re getting paid to do it!
High Barriers to Entry
Nature has decided your job cannot be outsourced. Modeling isn’t much of a meritocracy. Your pool of competitors is relatively small. If someone asked you how you chose modeling as a profession, you could simply reply, “I didn’t choose modeling, honey. It chose me.”
Less than 1% of the population has what it takes, genetically, to become a super model. You have to be tall (there’s little you can do to grow taller if you’re not born that way) and you have to be really skinny. It’s hard for those who aren’t naturally thin to maintain a low enough weight to have a successful modeling career and walk upright.
So, there you have it. The best and worst jobs in the world. Well, at least in my opinion.