Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 20th 2015 Contents J
in Westmall, MovieTowne
and Price Plaza are looking for
The successful individuals must meet the
• 3 - 5 O'levels including Maths and
• Good communications skills, reliable
• Aged 20 and over
• Experience in sales will be an asset
Please mail applications including resumé
no later than February 1, 2015 to:
8 Leotaud Street, San Fernando
Email Resumé to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Unsuitable applications will not be
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, January 20, 2015
Before you can change careers or
transition to a new field, you must go
back to the basics - knowing who you
are, and mapping out a strategy for a
transition that fits who you are.
This is where self-assessment fits in.
I like to refer to it as "self-exploration"
and not "self-assessment," which
frankly sounds too clinical.
What Is Career Self-Assessment/Self-
Self-exploration is a period in your life
when you step back from your busy, day-
to-day activities and look inside to take
stock of knowing who you are (a sense of
identity) and what is important to you.
It is usually one of the first steps (and in
my mind, the MOST important one) in
career reinvention. It is a process by which
you gather information about yourself (skills,
strengths, interests, personal brand, and
communication style) in order to make better
career decisions, and help you decide how
to transition into a new field.
During this phase, it is important to work
with a professional who is trained in admin-
istering and interpreting career assessments.
While working with a career counselor or
career coach, you'll go through a variety of
formal (objective) and informal (subjective)
assessments to gather information that will
be helpful in the career reinvention process.
Objective assessments are typically devel-
oped by assessment experts and provide a
third-party viewpoint. Usually, a career
coach or assessment expert reviews and
interprets the results with the client.
Subjective assessments tend to be more
informal, such as a homework assignment
or an exercise that you would do by yourself
(questions, journaling, visualization exercises,
meditation, and obtaining feedback from
others). This will help you get a clear under-
standing of what is important to you and
to help you envision the future.
Why Is Any of This Important?
When you step out of the day-to-day
grind and slow down and look inside, you
begin to get in touch with a part of yourself
which can't be tapped during the busy lives
A period of self-reflection can help you:
• Learn about yourself to help you pin-
point and brainstorm options for a new
career and/or field when you are con-
sidering a career transition.
• Become a foundation for making deci-
sions about which fields and work sit-
uations are best for you (job function,
industry, types of companies).
• Understand how you react and behave
in certain situations, and how your
behavior can enhance or help derail
• Enhance your self-esteem as you begin
to explore and see your unique skills
• See patterns and themes, and provide
a focus for prioritizing options for mov-
• Understand what differentiates yourself
from others in the marketplace so that
you can more effectively market "your
What Are the Different Parameters to
Look at During Career Self-exploration?
During the self-exploration phase, you
might want to consider evaluating all or
some of the following:
• Skills Inventory
• Behavioral and Communication Style
Personal brand - what differentiates you
from the competition?
• Entrepreneurial Propensity
• Leadership Profile
• Work-Life Balance and preferred
We can't address all of these in this short
article. Let's look at the three most important
parameters that you should consider.
1. Your Values
Understanding your values is probably
one of the most important (and frankly the
least concrete) of all the assessment param-
eters. Why? Because values touch the core
of who we are, why we work, and what we
want to get out of our work. And, if there
is a mismatch between your values and
those of the organization for which you
work, this mostly likely will lead to career
dissatisfaction and potential illness and
Here are some questions to ponder:
What is important to you in your life and
This could include achievement, work-
life balance, high salary, giving back to the
community, time for hobbies, etc.
Which values are the most important to
Can you rank this above list? If given a
choice between some of your values, which
ones would come out on top?
What motivates you and is important to
Susan Whitcomb in Job Search Magic
suggests that you also explore "fulfillment"
and "identity" by asking yourself the fol-
Why do you work? What is your purpose
in working? What difference do you want
What kind of legacy do you want to leave?
What gifts or strengths do you bring to
Who do you become when you do what
you love to do?
How do you define yourself?
Who are your role models? What do you
admire about the work they do?
2. Your Interests and Passions
Finding things you are interested in and
passionate about most likely will lead to
enjoyment and success.
How can you find what you are passionate
about and what interests you the most?
Reflect on your past and the things to which
you have been drawn. When you think about
your past, which types of activities attract
you? What activities do you love to do, and
would do even if you were not getting paid,
or getting paid very little?
Do you enjoy working with people, data,
Are you more of a thinker or do you prefer some
form of creative expression?
Do you prefer to build and create organizations?
Are you more of a doer?
Do you like to organize things?
Are you drawn to helping others?
Are there any particular job titles, or general job
categories that categorize the work you like to do?
Are there any particular industries that attract
3. Your Favorite Skills
Skills are important in terms of identifying the
right work function - the tasks and position(s) at
which you can be successful and be the happiest.
The skills that give you the greatest satisfaction,
called "motivated skills," typically lead to career sat-
isfaction and should be central to your focus in career
Here are some questions for you to think about:
In your past roles, what have you enjoyed the
Which skills gave you the most satisfaction?
Which skills did you like the least?
Which activities, when you do them, stress you
out or depress you?
Do you prefer to use a few skill areas and be a spe-
cialist in one career option?
Do you like to use a broad variety of skills and be
more of a generalist?
After you have asked yourself these questions, and
evaluated your values, interests, and skills, you will
be ready to take the next step toward career transition
or reinvention. If you really haven't gone through
this period of self-exploration, you could be jumping
into a new career that won't be an improvement over
where you are.. This discovery process can be involved,
complex, and even fatiguing, but it also can be illu-
minating and help guide you to the right career.
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