Career Tips from the National Career Development Conference 2013

Did you know that Boston, MA is the birthplace of career development?  It is also where hundreds of career development professionals traveled mid-July to attend the 100th anniversary celebration, and annual global conference, of the National Career Development Association.  For me, conferences are a time to gain new knowledge, network with new professionals, reconnect with existing connections, and refresh the passion and excitement we have for our career fields.

Over three days, I attended seven breakout sessions and listened to three wonderful keynote speakers.  After reflecting on the new information learned, I have highlighted three tips for career management and the job search.

1. Unlearn to learn- Richard Bolles

Richard Bolles, author of the best-selling job hunt book in the world What Color is Your Parachute, said, “You must unlearn to learn.”  Job hunting is about managing expectations, and with today’s economy, it is hard to predict or expect anything.  Bolles commented that people are bringing themselves down with unrealistic expectations.  This is where you should unlearn to learn.   Throw out your ideas and expectations (“unlearn”) on how your job search or career will progress.  This will allow for you to learn current trends and tips.

2. Skill and will- Dr. Tony Wagner

What a treat it was to listen to Dr. Tony Wagner, an advocate for transforming education for the 21st century.  Dr. Wagner stressed the importance of emphasizing skill and will in your job search and education endeavors.  Skill focuses on creating and seizing your own opportunities, and will is about finding and pursuing a passion to create your own motivation.  Dr. Wagner also mentioned failure, saying, “Fail early, and fail often by taking risks.”  This encourages you to enhance your skills, create new opportunities, and create new passions.

3. Help Them Grow, or Watch Them Go– Dr. Beverly Kaye

If you are one of our many students or alumni in a management position, you may want to read Dr. Beverly Kaye’s newest book, Help Them Grow, or Watch Them Go.  She focuses on what is needed to retain employers in today’s job market.  Kaye states, “it comes down to this: engage in short, ongoing conversations with employees about career options, needs, and passions.  It’s really that simple… and that complex.”  To learn more, take a moment to read her book!

These three leaders made an impact on me as I hope their tips do for you as well! 

Written by Career Services Advisor Andrea Obrycki

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