I had always wanted to follow in my mother’s footsteps and become a businesswoman. Mom kept this childhood album filled with my pictures, and many of them were of me standing beside my lemonade stand, selling Girl’s Scout cookies, and basically learning how to hustle.
However, before I graduated from college, I dealt with mild anxiety. Around that time, my mother’s business was not going too well due to the Great Depression. She still wanted to give me the capital for the café that I wanted to put up, but I felt the need to decline her offer because her business needed it more than I did. Instead, I looked for a job and became a junior marketing executive.
The Great Depression ebbed away months after that, and Mom’s business picked up. Again, she offered money to help me start my dream business. Still, I didn’t accept it because I saw potential in gaining experience in the marketing agency before opening my café and other future businesses.
Five years later, I was already a senior marketing executive. I had twice the amount that my mother initially offered for my business startup; I also got enough knowledge and experience to make sure it would click. The only problem was that I was scared of it becoming an awful decision I would ever make. After all, businesses came with lots of risks, including losing my 401k and medical benefits.
Unsure of my next steps, I consulted a job counselor.
What does a job counselor do?
- Improve an individual’s self-confidence
- Help a person gain clarity about their careers or possibly new endeavors
- Encourage individuals to use or develop their skills
What is job Counselling?
Job counseling is a form of counseling that people receive when unsure which career path to take.
Do career counselors work?
Yes, career counselors manage to help their clients. Still, their effectiveness depends on the clients’ willingness to follow their advice.
How can I get free career counseling?
Colleges and universities typically offer free career counseling to graduating students. Otherwise, you may look for free career tests online.
How do I decide on a career?
- Assess your skills and education.
- Create a list of jobs that will fit your skills.
- Decide on which jobs you want to try more than anything.
- Gather information through friends, colleagues, and family.
- Make a choice and identify your reasons for choosing that particular career.
- Figure out how you can have that career by creating an actionable plan.
What do career counselors look for?
- Personality type
- Possibility of furthering your skills and education
Who needs career counseling?
Career counseling is ideal for everyone, irrespective of how many years of professional experience you have.
How do I find a career I love?
- One of the first ways to find a career you love is by taking various aptitude tests to figure out your skills and strengths. You may see the suggested trades at the end of every test. Although they are not always 100% correct, knowing a field you will most likely excel at is nice.
- It is not wrong to jump from one job to another during the first few years. That is better than sticking to a position that does not make you happy.
- What are you most curious about? Curiosity does not kill the cat all the time – it can lead you towards the best career, too. Follow your interest and see what happens.
How do I prepare for a career coaching session?
Before your career coaching session begins, you need to fix your mindset and believe that your career will succeed after all the coaching you’ll get. Though it’s still 50:50, thinking that it will happen may put the odds in your favor.
In case you expect the session to be effective overnight, try again. Career coaching is not like a drug that can take effect after a few hours, regardless of your activities. Its effectiveness depends on your efforts to make it happen. The more you listen to your coach, the faster your life can change.
You should also make peace because honesty is and will always be the best policy – even in career coaching. There is no point in hiding your weaknesses to the coach, considering you are paying them to help you overcome those.
Furthermore, keep in mind that you have signed up for the session because of specific goals. Try not to forget these goals, especially when the situation seems challenging and you want to give up.
What questions do career counselors ask?
- How are your leadership skills?
- Can you work independently? How do you fare in a group setting?
- What roles have you taken on in your previous jobs?
- What have you learned from your previous jobs?
- What is the best learning method for you?
What happens in a coaching session?
During the first session, the coach may ask you to fill out a questionnaire. Their goal is to assess what aspects of your life you wish to change and what things may be preventing you from doing that. Though the coach expects you to answer the questions truthfully, it’s okay if you can’t answer all of them at once. That’s what coaches are for – they are supposed to help you gain clarity on your goals.
You can also expect your new coach to try various techniques to make it easier for you to make the much-needed change happen. Every session can only take up to 45 minutes, but you may want to free up an hour or so before and after the session so that you can process everything.
How do I prepare for my first coaching session?
When your first coaching session looms, you should prepare by doing the following:
- Charge your devices, make sure your internet connection is stable and fast, and update your Skype app early or whichever application you will use for the session.
- Plan about how you will coach people and what your topic(s) should be. It is irresponsible to talk on top of your head because you will most likely forget vital ideas by doing that. Jot down your plan in a notebook if you must.
- Give your clients time to reflect on everything you have talked about. They may not absorb it all at once, so they should get a few days before the next session begins.
After a few counseling sessions, I asked my bosses if I could do half of my job from home to finally put up my dream business. As I was laying out my plan, I still worried that they would say, “Heck no!” To my surprise, they were more excited about my new venture than I imagined. As long as I could do all my tasks on time and attend conference meetings, they would let me whatever I wanted. Thus, on June 6, 2014, Sweet Cups came to life and served every coffee lover in Upper Manhattan 24/7.