It is important for teenagers to get to know themselves better through:
- Their abilities (school and extracurricular performance, life skills).
- Their career interests (not just their hobbies).
- Their points of improvement (challenges, fears or other emotional blockages, skills related to particular jobs).
- Their values (what they are seeking from their lives, such as recognition, fame, money, free time, travelling, stability, routine, etc.).
- Their independence (Can I take care of myself? Can I meet my daily needs, so that I can work for someone else?).
- Their personality (social traits, decision-making abilities, self-confidence, communication skills, emotional resilience, adaptability, etc.).
Receiving the right information about different professions
To better understand different professions, teenagers should:
- Have a clear picture of the jobs offered in the market (books with references to universities and private colleges, institutes of vocational training, school career guidance).
- Search online for information on new professions that create new job opportunities (e.g. green jobs).
- Work in professional settings on a volunteer basis (internships).
- Visit trade fairs (e.g. Posidonia).
- Discuss with professionals in their circle of acquaintances.
- Be curious, not grow complacent, ask questions.
Education must aim at helping teenagers to develop the skills required by the job market, which relate to different professions. The qualifications of a professional (university degree, foreign languages, computer skills, certifications etc.) form the foundation for someone to embark on their career path. All those skills that help people become effective and efficient at work play a critical part for continuing on a career path. These include:
- Being able to communicate clearly and efficiently (face-to-face and online communication).
- Focusing on the task at hand and committing to a professional objective.
- Managing their time efficiently (meeting deadlines and work hours, understanding time restrictions, performing tasks according to schedule).
- Solving problems, since many problems arise in the daily life of a professional, requiring immediate action and resolution. A person’s ability to foresee or recognise risk, to find solutions to problems and to maintain their emotional clarity during crisis management are valuable skills for any kind of professional.
The tips were compiled by Vicki Pavlidi, Special Educator (MA), Educational Psychologist (MSc, HCPC/UK) and Career Counsellor (MA).