If you find yourself in the position where you want a change of direction, are returning to work after a career break or have been made redundant, it can be very difficult to step back into the situation of looking for a new job. However career counselling can help. I often hear statements from clients such as ‘I have no idea what I want to do but I know what I don’t want to do’ or ‘I know what I want to do but don’t know how to get there’.
When you come for one or more two hour career counselling sessions we agree what you want to get out of it. We can work on focusing your mind on the job you would like to have, perhaps by undertaking a number of exercises to help you recognise your aptitudes, preferred style of working and work environment.
The next step is to prepare a CV. I am always surprised how often when a client is leaving the room they make an off the cuff comment about something which they can do, or skill they have, that hasn’t been mentioned before and makes a huge impact on their CV.
It is really hard for any of us to write a CV about ourselves that focuses fully on our strengths. Having an outside view is very helpful. I also use a very unusual style of CV which stands out in a crowd and if you wanted to change direction it is wonderfully effective.
Preparing for an interview is also an essential skill which can be in need of refreshing. We would work through a mock interview, prepare well planned answers to the type of questions you may be asked and work on any areas of body language or tone of voice that might require polishing.
I have worked in career counselling for over 27 years and have also been involved in outplacement programmes for companies such as 3M, Tate and Lyle and the Prison Service.
I am the author of ‘Networking for business success’ published by Journey Learning and have written on career topics for the press including The Scotsman, Herald, Mail and Times.
' I have just accepted an excellent offer of employment from Newcastle United Football Club. This new division I will be running will bring together 1100 staff and have an annual turnover of ….million pounds.
The point of my writing is to say how much your help in re- writing my CV has been in helping be secure this senior position from a relatively junior positon with Scottish Enterprise. I was particularly impressed in the way that the CV guided the interviewers to my strengths and away from areas I felt less confident in. This had a positive effect on my performance during the interview. Another aspect was the way your presentation style used to the full ad two A4 sheets. I am sure that this was a very positive point when my CV was placed beside the others.
Please do not hesitate to use my name as a testament to the very cost effective and successful nature of your assistance. Thanks you again for your help'.
'I just wanted to put on record my great delight with the effectiveness and professionalism of your career development consultancy. It is possibly one of the most difficult tasks to take on a person whose confidence has taken a knock, and turn them into a sure-fire candidate for success. You succeed superbly well and in my view everyone whether satisfied with their career or not, could benefit from the advice and techniques which you offer.
Most people think they know how to make the best of themselves, particularly if they are successful in their job. But you showed me that nothing could be further from the truth. Without your training, applying for a job is like crossing the road blindfold.
I am very pleased with the service you provided which I am sure allowed me very quickly to achieve a welcome move to a prestigious post at a good salary – and to negotiate a better deal than one initially on offer. Please feel free to quote me at any time.
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