How to Rechoose Your Career

Part of my work entails being a career advisor, and I am amazed at how many clients think they have to spend lots of money to re-assess their career and goals. Emphatically, NO – not only are there free resources out in the real world to help you, there are also many nominal-fee based agencies that can also assist you in your career assessment or re-assessment.

Of course, the first route you should take is to really have an honest talk to yourself (and no, this is not the only free route) about what you want to do, like to do, or think you’d like to do. Then do a bit of research on the Internet or networking within your circle of friends and/or co-workers – find out the name of someone who actually DOES what you are thinking of doing, or like to do.

Contact that person (phone call is always nicer than email – as you want a personal approach) – but be very receptive that your call may be an interruption. Just quickly explain you’d like to ask that person about their work as you are thinking of joining that career (or job position), and would only take up about 5-8 minutes of their time – at their convenience. You might suggest meeting for coffee close to their work environment, and yes, you will buy the coffee (or you will bring it to their office). This is definitely worth the investment of your own time and pocket change for coffee, as you will gain a valuable allay to go to with other questions or concerns in that profession.

Another excellent route but so often neglected (and totally free) is to go to your local YMCA office or your local employment office. Remember, you do NOT have to be unemployed to use these services. All these offices want is your Social Insurance Number so they can add you to their list of those who took the course(s) – remember, these offices must show the government that people really ARE using these services: lack of participants means these services could be cut back – just when you really might need them!

Most Employment Centres have a calendar of events – and it is usually first-come, first-served for sign up. And yes, many of these courses fill up fast. There is usually a Career Assessment Seminar at least once every month, if not more. Local Career Advisors will often give a quick seminar to the local centre as well. You will also get free Resume help, as well as free access to faxing. And don’t forget to check out the employment boards – and free Internet access to job sites, too!

If you know the area you want to work in, contact the Employment Agencies for that area – many offer free or nominal-fee based assessments. Just check your local Yellow pages. Yes, you will have to first have an interview – remember, they might only give you the assessment if they think they can find you work (which is how they make their money).

So what are you waiting for? Start your Career Assessment (or re-assessment) now!