Your heart may go out to needy people and you may want to start working as a social worker; or you may be thinking of studying to be a social worker. But before you decide to enter the field of social work, there are a number of questions that you must ask yourself.
The first question that you need to ask yourself is; are you a people person? If your answer to this is yes then there are several other questions that you should answer.
- Do you want to specialize in a certain sector of social work? - Are you ready to work and live with people in desolate conditions? - Are you ready to work on weekends and when ever summoned? - Are you patient? - Are you a good listener? - Can you manage people and children? - Are you good at organizing? - Can you motivate people? - Can you work independently? - Are you ready to take responsibility? - Can you work with a team of professionals? - Are you a good communicator? - Can you convince people? - Can you manage and resolve conflicts?
If you have answered 'yes' to most of these questions, then it's advisable to have a professional qualification after which you can get a qualification in social work. Even social work, like other disciplines, has become specialized therefore it's better to specialize in one field rather than trying to become a jack of all trades. The reason for this is quite simple. If you are qualified in health care, you would be more confident and better qualified to help in this particular sector.
As a professional social worker, you are a care provider, and will have to work very closely with people. You could be posted to work anywhere in various places in the world, and under extremely trying circumstances. Also remember you may be called upon to do various types of work, which is beyond your scope or area of specialization.
You should be ready to work and study to move up the social worker's career ladder. Social work professionals working in remote or disaster struck areas generally get endeared with the people they are working with, making it difficult to leave them when your work is finished. If you think that you are qualified and capable of handling different situations, and genuinely enjoy helping other people, then this may be the career for you.