The Japanese have a term, Ikigai, that also addresses the job/career/calling paradigm. It is usually used to indicate the source of value in one’s life or the things that make one’s life worthwhile. Secondly, the word is used to refer to mental and spiritual circumstances under which individuals feel that their lives are valuable.

Passion, Profession, Vision, and Mission.

In addition to the two pieces in Aristotle’s model (What you are good at (your talents) and what the world needs, it adds two other key pieces: what you love to do, and what you can get paid for. Looking at the intersection of all these circles, you can see how it begins to address our Passion, Profession, Vision, and Mission.

From the individual employee standpoint I like this model more than the first one because of these additional perspectives, and especially because it helps to explain what some college students (think of the ‘occupy Wall St’ crowd) sometimes miss – which is to prepare themselves for a career that can actually support the lifestyle they hope to have or they have become accustomed to.

It adds the ‘do what you love’ piece, but balances it with make sure that someone (besides you) values it, and is willing to pay you for it.

I’ll stay off my soap box and keep it short and stop here, but look for additional models in upcoming posts.