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Take a Career Journey From Your First Job to Future Goal



I created this training as part of a Job Coaching and Interview Skills Training program I created for consulting clients back in 2008 when the last recession took place. I worked with several businesses who needed assistance with job analysis and position elimination to survive fiscally during that time. It is not easy when your work to help keep a company fiscally sustainable includes knowing that some jobs need to be eliminated. I always try to find a way to make things positive in the most trying of times. I created a job coaching program to help all of the employees I had to work with while eliminating their positions to support them in finding new jobs.


I am sharing this at this time, as I recently facilitated very condensed version of this training exercise recently. I have been thinking about it a lot as we are on the verge of another pending recession. I wanted to share it to help anyone who may have lost a job and has a need to get started looking for a career. I created, developed, facilitated and exercised a full program Job Coaching Program with concierge level support back in 2008 and was able to successfully work with those employees who needed the assistance to get new jobs. This was not an easy task as some of those I worked with had been employed for over 20 years in one organization, so they never had written a resume. This exercise has evolved over the years and I have added more depth to it as I attended more trainings, education and certification programs I constantly add or update the programs I write or facilitate to include all of my experience in them.


The purpose of this Career Journey exercise it to get the brain cognitively thinking about the jobs that a person had, and to go deeper to think about the environments in their journey to facilitate writing goals, overcome obstacles that may keep them stuck and looking for support systems to accomplish career goals. At a high level there is a Venn Diagram, a person will draw a Venn Diagram on a blank sheet of paper. In the first circle the person will write their first job, where the circles intersect the person will look write their current position and the last circle will include the career goal or the position they want to get. Once this is done, we need to think about the internal environment at the first job and write the positive things in the environment that helped them get from the first position to the current position. If there is not enough room, this shows we are limiting ourselves and need to create a bigger space or circle to include all of the positive things in our professional world that helped to get ahead, this can include training, education, mentors, peers, positive attitude, hard work, people, etc. The space outside the circle can include anything in the environment that kept us from getting ahead. I have added a few photos from posts I collected over the years to add more thought to this career journey.


The first photo shows all the things, thoughts and obligations we collect in our head that keep us from having clarity, when setting goals we need to focus on the task or position. I know myself, I need to journal to create a clear space to focus my thoughts on where I want to go or what I want to accomplish. Mindfulness practices give us many exercises to focus on ourselves and what we want to achieve, taking a few minutes to do this makes a big impact on the outcome and makes us happier. The second photo are some prompts to create a workflow to our career goals. The last photo shows how exercises like this where we take time to get clear, think about how we can execute a plan and put the plan down in writing helps to not only stay organized, instruct us on what we need to do, but also gives a clear thought process to our happiness and what we can actually make our reality as we focus on this plan.


The last circle where we put our next career goal or job title for our work journey is a working space. The person creating the journey or plan will be able to put some current positive things in that circle which have them on the correct path, and to keep adding to it until they have obtained the goal position. When we look at the career journey in the final section, we can see if we had limited thoughts or needs because we created circles too small to include the positive information we need. The outside space is all of the things that we need to clear from our head to stay focused and get ahead in the career journey or fluid things that may need to change and the circles are examples of the way our paths come full circle.


I hope that sharing this exercise is able to help anyone who feels stuck in their professional career goals or personal career journey. My personal goal is to always work with people who need to get clarity, think outside the box and never limit themselves in accomplishing career goals and or any other goals. Life is a journey so we need to keep moving forward. In closing, if you kept the same position throughout your journey, this takes dedication and hard work. It does not mean a person is stuck and there are usually many things they accomplish in that journey which they do not think about such as training, helping people, being good at their job, loving what they do and this is an opportunity to recognize these things as well. If you decide to complete this exercise and have any questions, please feel free to message me or email me and let me know if it was helpful or if you have any questions. The career journey is a way to journal about your goals to getting another position, growing your career or staying in a role that you are happy in and successful at. The career journey is personal and will look different for each person based on their wants and needs. It is also evolving, therefore it can look different today then in six months or six years as life constantly changes so do we.

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