So what do you want to do after school? What do you want to become? How do I want to live my life? The question many of us dread to answer. Career counselling can help.
Where do you even start? The reality is not a lot of people truly know how to answer this question. Shane Koyczan beautifully states the frustration many experiences to answer the above questions. He states:
“See, they asked me what I wanted to be, then told me what not to be. And I wasn’t the only one. We were being told that we somehow must become what we are not, sacrificing what we are to inherit the masquerade of what we will be. I was being told to accept the identity that others will give me.”
However, it does not have to be like this! The reality is that in the modern economy people reinvent themselves constantly, and striving to and more purpose in their work or career choices. The exciting eld of career counselling can help empower you to answer these questions. (Or even be more comfortable with the ambiguity in deciding on a career path).
What is career counselling?
Career counselling is the process in which psychological assessments and interviewing techniques are used to empower clients to make an informed decision about their future or current career prospects. Basically, it is a process that can assist a client design their ideal career or life
Therefore this process can help:
- Make a decision about the subjects you have to take at school
- Help to decide what to study after school.
- Inform you on what career field is best suited for the life you want to build.
- Highlight fields that will provide you with a sense of purpose
- Design a joyful life at any stage of your career.
- Identify what skills you need to move forward in your career.
How does career counselling work?
The career counselling process is normally a collaborative process. The career counsellor would use various career counselling assessments and use the results of these assessments to assist the client in making an informed decision about the next step.
The life design approach to career counselling has gained popularity over the last few years with the work of Mark Savickas and it has started shifting the thinking from a positivistic paradigm in career counselling to a more constructivist paradigm. This means that career counselling is shifted from a worldview believing that client’s personality is fixed and the career counsellor needs to investigate this and tell the client what to do vs. we all are in the process of growth and development.
What does the career counselling process look like?
The career counselling process, depending on a client’s needs, normally consists of the assessment process and the counselling process. Traditionally these are the type of assessments I use during the career counselling process:
- Personality assessment
- Values assessment
- Interest assessment
- Aptitude assessment
However, the traditional approach has come under scrutiny lately due to its positivistic assumptions. Therefore the life design or career construction approach is recommended. This approach combines elements of self-construction. The career construction process normally entails the career construction interview and if the client needs more clarity the above mentioned assessments will be incorporated as well. In general help with life designing theory, career construction theory and the life design paradigm.
Values of career counselling
A very important aspect of this process is using this information to empower the client to make the decision. The information from the above-mentioned career assessments is used to empower the client to help tell their own story. A key feature is to identify the career themes that emerge during the process. The process entails deconstructing your personal narrative and then reconstructing it through the awareness the process brings. The themes identified through the process generally empower the client and help them live out their personal narrative through their career field. This will help to make the decision.
“[Career] assessment and intervention should, therefore, be aimed at improving people’s employability, enhancing their career adaptability, and helping them assume authorship of their career and life stories”
Who usually needs career counselling:
- A student needing clarity on what career will suit their abilities
- A student that needs to decide which subjects to choose at school
- A graduate that is seeking clarity on the career decisions A person seeking a career change
- A young adult going through a quarter-life crisis