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How to help your kids navigate their careers and make “good” career and life decisions

The world of work is in the midst of a tech and societal revolution.  60% of current school students will enter roles that don’t currently exist. Yes. Mind-blowing! The old way of thinking what job do I want and therefore what study do I need to do is not going to cut it for many any more.  We need to be thinking differently. Are you ready? Do you want your kids to be up with the play? You need to read this ebook. It’ll only take you probably 20 minutes of your life.

Tips and perspectives for parents and other supporters to help with youth career decisions. I’ve met a lot of young people with no idea what they want to do or “should” do. They say their parents just want them to do something that will make them happy, fulfilled and hopefully from which they’ll be able to get a decent job.

When asked, “What do you want to do (or be)?” it’s very common for the answer to be, “I don’t have a clue.” It’s a stressful time for the young person and their families – the sharp end of schooling. This ebook covers common questions, real-life examples, stresses and challenges for University Students and new Graduates and delves into the neuroscience of emerging adult brain development – the stuff that makes it really hard for youth to make career decisions – and offers practical tips and guidance for how you can help.

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Youth and Career Decisions – First Jobs Matter

First jobs matter. A recent article in the Washington Post (with USA info which may be different to NZ and elsewhere but is interesting nevertheless) stated that 43% of new graduates being “underemployed” in their first jobs.

  • “The 43 percent of workers who were underemployed in their first job were five times as likely to be underemployed five years later as those who were not underemployed in their first job.”

It may pay to consider appropriate coaching support for University Students and Graduates. Just because they’ve chosen their degree definitely does not mean they’ve got it sorted. Far from it. It’s a high stakes time and job search support and life tools (e.g. job search support, accountability coaching, stress and resilience coaching) may make a big difference in career, personal and development prospects.

Similarly, in “the permanent detour“, the authors state:

  1. The first job is critical. Those who start out well employed rarely slide into underemployment.
  2. Those who start out behind tend to stay behind.
  3. STEM graduates are less at risk of being underemployed
  4. The financial costs of underemployment are substantial.
  5. Women are more likely to start out behind and are more likely to be underemployed regardless of major.

How to help your kids navigate their careers and make “good” career and life decisions

Tips and perspectives for parents and other supporters to help with youth career decisions. I’ve met a lot of young people with no idea what they want to do or “should” do. They say their parents just want them to choose something that will make them happy, fulfilled and hopefully from which they’ll be able to get a decent job.

When they’re asked, “What do you want to do (or be)?” it’s very common for the answer to be, “I don’t have a clue.” It’s a stressful time for the young person and their families – the sharp end of schooling. But school life will come to a close and choices will be made. Even procrastinating and not making a decision is making a decision to do nothing.

Some young people (am I allowed to call them kids?!) have ideas and they are fairly self-aware in terms of their natural strengths and interests. For these youth, it’s helpful to get confirmation that they are on track and their ideas are well grounded.

Universities are full of bright hopeful youth who’ve been sold the line that if you work hard, come out with a good degree,  that the world will take care of the rest.

You’re part of the system, and the system works. Hmmm. Maybe not anymore.  Degrees guarantee nothing.  There are masses of potentially good options and wonderful and fulfilling career paths.  It’s just a matter of supporting and empowering your youth to navigate their own.

This ebook offers a raft of real-life stories (anonymously of course) of youth facing a variety of challenges and situations. For example:

  • Struggling student
  • Drifter
  • Disengaged at school
  • Course “changers”
  • Lots of potential – and completely lost
  • High achiever and all-rounder
  • High achiever and perfectionist
  • Drop-out
  • Independent – Gap Year
  • Success focused and practical
  • “Solid” kids
  • A graduate who couldn’t get a break

“What’s the “right” career?”

I offer a couple of different ways, with guidance, on how to answer this question. We also delve into a bit of neuroscience because it’s critical to understand a few things about young brains (emerging adults).

The ebook also covers a range of other questions such as:

  • Could he/she do a double/conjoint degree?
  • Going away or staying at home?
  • Which institution?
  • Biggest challenges
  • Looking for an after-school job?

Questions for parents include this: How much are some of the following issues affecting your child’s prospects for success?

  • Stress, anxiety (and their resilience tools and capabilities)
  • Lifestyle habits and choices
  • Confidence
  • Clarity about self
  • Awareness of options
  • Clarity about direction and ambitions
  • Effective Skills for Job Search – the basics of CVs, using networks etc

 

Many students figure it out, but I do suggest considering getting professional coaching (or other professional support as appropriate for your situation) if you are concerned. Trust your gut on this – it’s usually right.

The ebook covers all of the above, suggestions and guidance on how to identify career options, evaluate career choices and tips on how to research choices.

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