The do's and don'ts for giving career advice
Your teen is going to want to come to you about their future.
They will be faced with decisions about subjects, pathways, careers and what they want to be when they grow up.
They may be overwhelmed, consumed with their thoughts and options, stressed about making the right decision yet also filled with anticipation and excitement for what life could be like beyond school.
Are you ready for that conversation?
As a Career Coach, I have the privilege of having career conversations with students who are at the beginning of their career development journey.
I hear about all types of parents and sometimes have them join the session with their child.
To sum up parents, we sit in either one of these categories...
Which category do you sit in?
Which parent would you like to be?
Thankfully, in Australia these days students are being educated about career development.
You may be thinking, I wasn’t taught this kind of stuff at school, to make career decisions, to build self-agency, be the leader and manager of my own career, to know about myself - skills, strengths, values and develop career adaptability skills.
The career advice given was limited, in most instances not helpful and as adults, you may still be stumbling and fumbling your way through your careers.
You may be wondering, how can I possibly give advice, guide my teen through this time in their life and help them be happy in their own career?
The first thing to do is, look at ourselves.
Your child’s first role model for life and career is the family environment.
Teens come into their early adult life with incomplete information, limited views, knowledge, thinking and career choices based on what they experienced, seen, heard and were exposed to growing up.
What kind of thoughts, actions, beliefs and behaviours are being displayed in your family home about careers?
What attitudes around careers are being role modelled?
Let’s look back even further,
What was your experience growing up?
What was modelled to you about careers?
What advice were you given at the same age?
Was it helpful?
Most people haven’t spent the time thinking about their career or taken the time to consider if they are really in a position to give career advice to their teens?
Do you know your top 3 values, skills, strengths and interests?
Have you ever created a career plan or set career goals and actually worked towards them?
When was the last time you did a career audit, checked in on how happy you are in your career or spent the time thinking deeply about what you really want?
Do you know the meaning and purpose of your life?
When your child comes to you for advice what can you do?
As parents, we need to know when to step aside and let a professional give career advice to our teen by means of a career coach, career counselor or career advisor.
We can still be there for our teens as the sounding board, the cheerleader, encourage them to try new things and be the trustworthy person they can confide in while they are searching for themselves. Your teen is going to want to talk through the confusion and my one piece of advice is to listen till you don’t exist.
Any unwanted advice is going to shut them down, make them withdraw even further and hide in their phone or room more often.
Do you remember what it was like to be a teen?
They are still learning about themselves and discovering who they are, go on that journey with them.
Watch the interview from the Empower Your Teen summit and download your Empower Your Teen Notebook below.
Want to learn more about your career development?
Let’s look further into this together through a FREE Discovery Session.
I look forward to hearing from you.