We all face many situations that require making career decisions. Everyone will manage these in their own way, as each career is unique.
It makes sense for each of us to take as much control of our careers as we can. In doing so, we’ll be better placed to generate our own career plan and make the decisions needed to put it into action.
Learning how to make effective career decisions is crucial. It will help you to:
- manage and take control of your career
- adapt to change
- take advantage of career opportunities as they arise.
What’s your decision-making style?
Decision making can be complex. To reach a choice, we need to take account of our current values, interests, aptitudes and preferences as we try to make sense of the information, ideas and impressions coming from the world around us.
How do you make important decisions? Most people have their own preferences. These can range from working intuitively and according to what feels right, to doing things step-by-step in an ordered, rational and systematic way. Some people may keep things to themselves, weighing up decisions in their own head. Others will want to involve people they know, gathering and testing out their ideas and thoughts.
Reflect on the career decisions you made when you were selecting your senior subjects at school.
- How certain were you about your next steps?
- How did you go about making your decision?
- Were there any important influences?
- To what extent was it a well-thought through, conscious decision, based on research?
- Did you collect a lot of information and generate a range of options?
3 obstacles to effective decision-making
Making decisions that affect your career can be complex for several reasons.
- The consequences of a decision can be significant – but it’s usually not possible to have all the information.
- There may be many alternatives, each with its own set of trade-offs and compromises.
- Career decisions can involve complex interpersonal issues arising from the involvement from other people, including our family, partners and friends.
Given these barriers, it’s not surprising that most of us have at some stage made career decisions that weren’t entirely rational and logical. Instead, circumstances and our emotions influenced them.
Good career decisions will depend on your readiness
It’s common for people to try to make career decisions without asking themselves whether they’re feeling ready to do so. Here are some reasons why you may not be ready to make a specific career decision:
- You may lack motivation and feel that given enough time the ‘right’ career choice will ‘just happen’.
- You may be indecisive and confused by decision making in general.
- You may have beliefs and assumptions that aren’t based in reality. For example, ‘I believe there’s only one ideal career for me’ or ‘I only get one chance at making a career decision’.
- You may find it difficult to commit to a specific career choice, fearing that you may miss out on a better option.
- You may find it challenging to balance the importance of your ideas with the importance of other people’s ideas (especially of people close to you).
Getting ready to make an effective career decision begins with self-awareness. Put some time into reflecting on your decision-making style. What do you need to find out, do or have to make this particular decision? Time? Information? Skills? Commitment? Inspiration? Support? Confidence? Other resources? How might you make, develop or find what you need?
Two-person teams from schools across the region converged on Noosa Leisure Centre last Saturday to test their drone racing skills.
It was the culmination of a unique five-week “Flying Inventor” training program to give the students a taste for careers in engineering and computer science.
Students learnt how to design, build, fly and race first-person view quadcopters, which are not your standard plug and play drones.
“First-person view racing is one of the most exciting things you can do with a drone. One of the world’s fastest growing new sports, drone racing uses special first-person-view goggles, to give flyers a first person view from the drone’s camera as they fly around a race track avoiding obstacles and fellow competitors. It’s the closest you can get to being a bird!” says Tracey King, Noosa Council’s Literacy and Learning Coordinator.
Each school nominated teams of two students from Year 9 or 10 who showed talent and interest in drones and new technology.
Teams from Good Shepherd, Sunshine Beach, Coolum State High School and Victory College competed in the final with the team of Lincoln Favelle and Will McGarry from Good Shepherd Lutheran College winning gold medals. Ben Lockwood and Kevin Varghese from Victory College and Elijah Keegan and Ethan Bischoff from Sunshine Beach State High School came in second and third place, winning silver and bronze medals.
“While race day was fun, it’s also serious business,” says Tracey. “Students were taught about mechanical engineering and the fundamental computer science of drones, before taking to a simulator to learn how to fly them. The aim of this program is to inspire youngsters to pursue careers in computer science and invention.”
Noosa Library Service partnered with Council’s Peregian Digital Hub and a range of local industry professionals to deliver the training and race day. The program was assisted by local computer scientist and engineer – Malte Von Ruden, a drone pilot and photographer – Eamon Kriz from ‘In the Air Cinematography’ and his colleague Connor Middleton (both year 11 students), a local sculptor – Matt Godden and 3D artist Hannah Crosby plus Central Queensland University and simulator software company Lugus Studios.
The Flying Inventor Program is supported by an Advance Queensland Engaging Science Grant.
Novotel Twin Waters Resort has been recognised as the top venue in Queensland, taking home gold in the highly contested Business Event Venue category at the 2018 Queensland Tourism Awards, held on the Gold Coast on Friday night (16 November).
“We are beyond excited to receive the highly sought-after gold award in the Business Events category,” said Rachel Smith, Director of Sales & Marketing for Novotel Twin Waters Resort.
“The resort has had an incredible year, and winning this top award recognises all of the dedication and commitment of our team members here at Novotel Twin Waters Resort.”
Ms Smith, who oversees the business events unit at the resort, said the highly-experienced team had been focused for some time on positioning Novotel Twin Waters Resort as one of Australia’s most sought after conference, events and incentives venues.
“An idyllic location on the Sunshine Coast makes the Novotel one of the most adaptable business events venues in Australia,” she said. “Winning gold not only reinforces our decision to reinvigorate Novotel Twin Waters Resort in the coming months, but will help drive our passion to deliver exceptional new experiences for our incentive and conference partners in the coming year.”
The business event venue award was one of two major wins announced for Novotel Twin Waters Resort at the event, with the iconic Sunshine Coast property also named official hosting venue for the Queensland Tourism Awards gala event in 2019.
Ms Smith said, “Winning gold in our category aside securing the 2019 hosting venue rights is certainly cause for a dual celebration, however we are mindful that success like this is only made possible when destination partners come together and focus on collaboration rather than individual success. The Sunshine Coast is certainly making a strong name for itself on the events stage!”
Echoing Ms Smith’s enthusiasm, Novotel Twin Waters Resort General Manager, Steve Wellsteed, said, “We welcome this incredible vote of confidence from the Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC), and are thrilled that Novotel Twin Waters Resort has secured rights to host the prestigious 35th Queensland Tourism Awards at our new-build convention centre in 2019. It will be an absolute pleasure to host this event in this brand new venue and deliver a memorable night for Queensland’s top tourism talent and ambassadors.”
Mr Wellsteed added that since announcing the start of construction on the new purpose-built facility last month (October 2018), Novotel Twin Waters Resort’s convention centre had been extremely well received by both the local community and the wider business events industry.
“The resort has already confirmed a number of events for 2019 and beyond, and importantly has now attracted interest from events which had previously not considered the Sunshine Coast region,” he explained. “The Queensland Tourism awards gala will present an incredibly exciting opportunity for us to showcase the potential of this dynamic new venue for all of our tourism partners and supporters to experience, first hand.”
Novotel Twin Waters Resort owners, Shakespeare Property Group, has committed to investing more than $8 million to deliver the region its largest conventions venue within the iconic Novotel resort, and an additional $2 million in planned updates and improvements of public area and accommodation at the property.
Shakespeare Property Group’s investment comes at a time of renewed investment interest in the destination, including Bruce Highway updates for better accessibility from Brisbane, and new runway facilities for the nearby Sunshine Coast Airport to enhance the route for interstate travellers.
AccorHotels Vice President Operations QLD/NT, Matt Young, said, “We are delighted to hear that QTIC has selected our new convention centre at Novotel Twin Waters Resort to host its premier tourism event for the state. The resort was the number one conference facility for the AccorHotels group in Queensland last year, and is undergoing some truly exciting updates. I know the team will deliver an outstanding event and look forward to rolling out the red carpet for the industry’s best in 2019.”
Mr Young added that the awards will be perfectly timed to capitalise on some investments and updates shaping the destination in the year to come.
“It is a time of evolution and development for the tourism and events industry on the Sunshine Coast,” he said. “In recent years the event has only been hosted in Brisbane and the Gold Coast, so this announcement confirms the Sunshine Coast’s coming of age and ability to host world class events.”
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson said securing the awards is a significant coup and has been achieved through the Business Events Assistance Program – a joint initiative of Sunshine Coast Council and Business Events Sunshine Coast, a division of Visit Sunshine Coast.
“Hosting these prestigious awards will be a great opportunity to showcase both our region and our ability to host a premium quality industry event like this one,” said Mayor Mark Jamieson.
“It’s our opportunity to show off the Sunshine Coast in all its glory – all of our amazing tourist attractions, the businesses, the beautiful local produce from across the region and the people within our community. It will also provide a significant economic benefit, given it is anticipated to attract over 1000 visitors to the Sunshine Coast for these awards”.
Novotel Twin Waters Resort and its management company, AccorHotels (the largest hotel operator in Queensland), are among QTICs most committed corporate partners.
QTIC is the peak industry body for tourism in Queensland, acting as “The Voice of Tourism”. QTIC is a non-government private sector, membership-based organisation representing the interests of the tourism and hospitality network across Queensland.
For more about QTIC visit www.qtic.com.au. For more information on the new convention centre at Novotel Twin Waters Resort, visit www.novoteltwinwatersresort.com.au/conventioncentre.html
One of the practices that contributes to Michael Phelps’ success as a swimmer takes place well before he gets into the pool. As part of his training regimen, Phelps visualizes every detail of his race—from responding to something going wrong (like ripping his suit) to crossing the finish line ahead of his competitors.
Phelps has used visualization (along with other training methods, of course) to achieve incredible things in his career, like winning 28 Olympic medals to become the most decorated Olympian of all time. But you don’t need to be a world-class athlete to borrow his tricks—and I’m living proof.
Visualization has played an absolutely essential part in hitting a number of my career goals, such as pitching high-profile clients with confidence, scaling my business to six figures, and tackling large, complex projects without feeling completely overwhelmed. My visualization practice has, in many ways, acted as the bridge between where I am in my career at any given moment to where I want to be—by allowing me to see and feel my future success before it actually happens.
“Think about building a jigsaw puzzle. Have you ever attempted to build one without having the box top to look at? It is extremely difficult to complete the puzzle without knowing what the outcome should look like,” says executive leadership coach Cynthia Corsetti. “You may fit pieces together, you may get bits and pieces of the puzzle done, but it will take longer, be more challenging, and possibly never reach completion.”
Corsetti believes the same is true of your career; the more clear and detailed you are when you visualize what you want from your career, the easier it will be to make it a reality.
Of course, while visualization can definitely help you improve performance, for the best results, you need to pair it with action. Phelps didn’t just visualize himself winning races—he also spent hundreds and hundreds of hours in the pool.
Want to give visualization a try? Here’s what you need to know to get started.
Before we jump into how visualization can completely transform your career, let’s quickly cover what, exactly, visualization is.
“Visualization is the ability to create a clear picture in your mind of the exact circumstance you wish to create,” says Corsetti. “It has also been called setting intention, attraction, and ‘positive thinking,’” she adds. It’s “an actual skill that a person can learn.”
Visualization is seeing, feeling, and completely embodying a future outcome—whether that’s snagging the corner office, completing a marathon, or buying your dream home—before it happens. By creating your desired future outcome in your mind in as much detail as possible, you can actually transform your visualization into reality.
How Does Visualization Actually Work?
When you visualize yourself hitting a specific goal, your brain interprets that imagery as reality—and, as a result, creates new neural pathways to support that reality.
“Visualization is effective at boosting performance because it activates the same regions of the brain that are activated when actually performing a task—athletic, academic, [or] anything else,” says Roselyn Smith, a licensed psychologist, hypnotherapist, and management consultant. “It actually changes the pattern of our electrochemical brain waves.”
In other words, by using visualization, you’re tricking your brain into acting as if your desired outcome—whether that’s nailing a presentation, landing a big promotion, or launching your own business—has already happened. And because your brain thinks your desired outcome has already happened, you’re more likely to take the actions necessary to align with your brain’s perceived reality.
Visualization can even cause physical changes. One study found that participants who visualized workouts were able to increase their muscle mass by 13.5% over the course of 12 weeks—even though they never stepped foot inside a gym. (Imagine how much more they’d have gained if they’d actually worked out!)
What Visualization Exercises Can I Do to Be More Successful at Work?
So research has shown that visualization can work. But how, in practice, do you use it to make you more successful? Here are a few exercises to get you started.
Start With Basic Visualization
If you’re just hopping on board the visualization train, you’re going to want to start with the basics. Carve out a few quiet minutes each day to sit down, close your eyes, and picture where you want to go, who you want to be, and what you want to do in your career. You can start small (like picturing yourself rocking an upcoming presentation) or go big (like celebrating your first six-figure year in business).
The key to this exercise is being as specific as possible. See what’s going to happen clearly in your mind. Home in on all the small details, from what you’re wearing to the way you’re speaking. And let yourself experience the emotions that go along with the visualization (so, for example, the sense of pride you’d feel when landing a raise or the rush of excitement you’d get when you launch a new product). The more realistic you can make your visualization, the more effective it’ll be.
Picture the Worst-Case Scenario
There are bound to be obstacles on any career journey. With visualization, you can anticipate what they’ll be—and come up with a plan so you know exactly how to handle them when they arise.
Let’s say, for example, that you’re gearing up to pitch a new project idea to your team. Visualize all the things that could go wrong—your presentation crashes, you forget important information in the middle of your pitch, your team says they’re not interested—and, more importantly, how you’ll handle them.
Entrepreneur Tim Ferriss calls this “fear-setting;” basically, you spend time imagining all the potential worst-case scenarios and how you’d navigate them. This way, you’ll be prepared and have a game plan if and when it happens, and you’ll be much more likely to succeed as a result.
Focus on Specific Skills or Goals
As the previously mentioned study showed, practicing a task in your mind can yield measurable results—even if you never practice that task IRL.
Want to become a better public speaker? Spend time visualizing yourself speaking to large crowds. Want to increase the number of potential clients you speak to each day? Picture yourself hitting the phones and connecting with tons of prospects each day. The point is, the more you practice the skill in visualizations, the better you’ll be at said skill in reality.
Write it Down
Have a hard time visualizing things in your mind? No worries! Writing down your visualizations can be just as effective as picturing them in your head—perhaps even more so.
“I have my clients write a story that describes in detail what they want their future to look like—down to the pictures on the wall of their office,” says Corsetti. “Adults learn by using all their senses. By writing the exercise they are using their thoughts as well as the physical activity of writing which seals the idea and makes it more concrete.”
The Next Steps
What Else Do I Have to Do?
Clearly, visualization is a powerful tool. But here’s an important reminder: If you want to see real results, you need to pair it with tangible actions. You can visualize yourself calling up 100 client prospects a day—but if you never actually pick up the phone, you’re not going to get the results you’re looking for.
It’s “more than just ‘think about it and it will happen,’” says Corsetti. “You see, when you visualize yourself as a leader, or as an entrepreneur…you have to start to respond [and act] as you would in that role.”
So, for example, if you’re visualizing yourself landing a coveted promotion, in addition to picturing yourself in this new role, you need to start acting as if you’re already in it, whether that means taking on more responsibility, mentoring newer members of your team, or logging extra hours at the office.
And when you pack this one-two punch—visualization and action? “Opportunities begin to present themselves. You attract people and circumstances that will help you get there,” Corsetti explains. “It literally steps up your game on a daily basis.”
Visualization is like a roadmap for that old saying—if you can dream it, you can achieve it. Because the right exercises can help you imagine the career you want. And with that vision, plus the corresponding actions, you can start making it a reality.
As the old saying goes, property is all about location, location, location.
A new medium-density precinct on the Sunshine Coast is looking to leverage just that, combining waterfront and parkland living with convenience to local employment, healthcare and shopping facilities.
Stockland’s Sway Birtinya is the latest development attracted to the area by the massive 17ha Sunshine Coast Health Precinct at Kawana, which has links to public transport, a hotel, aged care apartments and a greenfield “health hub” facility for specialists.
Stockland senior development manager Matt Patullo said the Birtinya community’s proximity to these facilities would provide convenience for workers.
“Stockland’s Birtinya community has been a sought-after neighbourhood for health professionals and those looking to upgrade to a prime location on the Sunshine Coast since the project first launched,” Mr Patullo said.
“Sway’s quality designs and low-maintenance lifestyle within walking distance of two hospitals and Birtinya Town Centre is also a drawcard for healthcare workers.”
Sway Birtinya will have 60 townhouses and a central park, barbecue facilities and a community swimming pool, with Mr Patullo promising affordability was key for the region.
Sunshine Coast architecture firm O.G.E. Group designed each townhouse to be distinctive.
“We’ve focused very much on every home having a connection to the outdoors, and every residence having its own identity,” O.G.E. Group director John Robertson said.
“Life’s busy so you want to come home and relax and enjoy the Coast, whether in your private space or in the communal areas.”
So, you’ve got a gap in your resume? Maybe you decided to travel, or go back to school, or maybe you looked after a sick relative, or you took time out to be a parent yourself. Whatever the reason, you’re probably feeling like your job hunt is going to be that much harder. Surely any recruiter looking at your resume is going to run a mile away.
Most employers nowadays recognize that it’s rare for anyone to stay with just one or two companies for their whole career. Plus, job security isn’t what it used to be (unfortunately).
As a recruiter, I’ve interviewed my fair share of candidates, and if there’s one piece of advice I can give you, it’s this. Think about how to present your gap. With a little foresight, you can turn a potentially tricky interview situation into a masterclass in personal branding.
1. So, You Lost Your Job
Some people find it embarrassing to talk about being laid off, but it’s unlikely to elicit anything but sympathy from your interviewer. It’s fairly commonplace these days. Just remember not to badmouth your past company or boss. Instead, focus your response on all the positive things you achieved while you were there.
“That #!&$! company had it in for me from day one. I probably would’ve left anyway.”
“Unfortunately, the company had to implement some budget cuts and, due to their ‘last-in, first-out’ policy, I was made redundant. However, I’m proud of what I achieved during my time there, something which can be reinforced by my previous manager, who’s one of my referees.”
2. So, You Quit Your Job and Traveled the World
The key with this one is to focus on how traveling contributed to your personal development, rather than how much fun you had schlepping around the world with nothing but a backpack and a smile. If you took on any paid or volunteer work during this time, concentrate your response on the additional personal and professional skills it’s given you.
“Well let’s face it, partying in Thailand is a lot more fun than going to work. I’m pretty sure I had an awesome time, but I can’t actually remember most of it.”
“I spent a number of years working at a company in a very demanding job, in which–as you’ll see from my references–I was very successful. But I’d reached a stage in my career where I wanted to focus on my personal growth. The time I spent traveling taught me a lot about how to get along with people of all ages and cultures. Now I feel more than ready to jump back into my career with renewed energy and focus and I feel this role is the ideal way to do that.”
3. So, You Went Back to School
This is perhaps the easiest one to explain. Particularly if what you did is relevant to your chosen career. Even if not, it’s easy to put positive spin on something that requires a certain level of intelligence and hard work.
“I’m still trying to figure out what I want to do with my life, so I stayed in school rather than getting a job. I am still uncertain if this career path is right for me.”
“I wanted to expand my career options by completing some training/getting a qualification in x. Now that I’ve achieved my educational goals, I’m looking forward to using my qualifications to benefit the company I work for. This role is the perfect way for me to do that because…”
4. So, You Took Time Off for Health Reasons
Brevity’s key here. The interviewer won’t expect (or want) you to go into painstaking detail about an attack of depression or a serious back operation. Prepare a straightforward explanation that you’re comfortable sharing. Mention how proud you are that you were able to overcome your health problems and then move the conversation swiftly into the present day by discussing the relevant skills you have to offer this company.
“Whoa, yeah, things were pretty bad there for a while..”
“I went through a tough time emotionally/physically due to… and I took some time out to concentrate on getting better, so I could get back to work as quickly as possible. I’m pleased that I overcame that challenge because it’s made me a stronger person but now I’m fully recovered and ready to focus on the next stage of my career.”
5. So, You Had to Take Care of Your Family
Remember, caring for the sick or elderly and raising a family are tough jobs that require a huge range of skills, which you now have in abundance. No interviewer should make you feel like your decision to prioritize family over career reflects badly on you.
If you had time to keep your skills and industry knowledge up to date, make sure you mention this. End the discussion by telling the interviewer that you’re excited to recommit yourself to your career. And remember, any company worth your time and effort should recognize what an all-round superhero you clearly are.
“I live the closest to my mom so I drew the short straw in having to take care of her. I just couldn’t handle looking after her and holding down a job!”
“After a lot of thought, I decided that my top priority was my child/elderly parent/sick spouse. However, I made sure to keep my professional skills up to date during that time. Now I’m in a position to refocus on my career and I’m looking forward to utilizing all the additional soft skills I’ve learnt.”
Lastly, remember that lying on your resume or in interview is a really bad idea. When you’re asked about a gap in your employment, take a deep breath and acknowledge the interviewer’s concern. Stay composed and don’t get defensive: it will reassure the interviewer that you’re confident and comfortable with your reasons so there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be too.
Sunshine Coast publishing software company wins the 2018 Premier of Queensland’s Export Award for Small Business
Maroochydore-based publishing software company Typefi has been recognised for its global success, winning the 2018 Premier of Queensland’s Export Award for Small Business and being named as a finalist in the Digital Technologies category.
Founded on the Sunshine Coast in 2001, Typefi is a world leader in singlesource automated publishing software for print, web and mobile, enabling people to publish their content faster and in more formats without compromising on design or content integrity.
Typefi has been exporting software and services since 2007, with exports accounting for 92% of revenue in the 2017–18 financial year.
90% of Typefi’s customers are based overseas and include household names such as Lonely Planet, the New England Journal of Medicine, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), Pioneer, the World Health Organization, and the International Monetary Fund.
Ben Hauser, Typefi Vice President Engineering, who accepted the award at a ceremony in Brisbane on 11 October, said it was an honour to be chosen from amongst a strong and diverse field of Small Business finalists.
“Our software enables you to publish your content to 30 formats in three minutes, but the truly unique thing about it is that your automatically created content looks like a human has hand-crafted it thanks to some really sophisticated algorithms and our patented AI technology,” Ben said.
“We have offices and staff all over the world and customers in 65 countries, but we’re a proud Sunshine Coast company—we wouldn’t want to be based anywhere else.”
Typefi was one of four Sunshine Coast companies up for export awards, alongside Helimods, Walker Seafoods and Aussie Red Crab.
Sunshine Coast Economic Development and Innovation Portfolio Councillor Steve Robinson said the Sunshine Coast was fast becoming a hub for international exporters.
“Exporting is a key component of our Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) which aims to increase exports from the region from 13% to 20% by 2033,” Cr Robinson said.
“With Sunshine Coast companies like Typefi steadily increasing their global connections and exports, we are well on the way to reaching that target.
“It’s important to council to continue to support and assist local businesses both locally, nationally and internationally and our Economic Development Branch works closely with these businesses to maximise their potential for success.
“The economic prospects for the region are strong and having four companies in the finals is a solid indicator that the Sunshine Coast is definitely open for business.”
The Premier of Queensland’s Export Awards are coordinated by the Export Council of Australia on behalf of Trade and Investment Queensland.
The annual event acknowledges Queensland businesses engaged in international trade, and rewards their dedication to being the best at what they do within the state and around the world.
Ross Tilly, Principal Trade and Investment Officer with Trade and Investment Queensland, congratulated Typefi for its ongoing success in growing international activities with its market-leading technology.
“Winning this award provides confidence to international customers, both new and existing, that Typefi is the credible choice for multi-platform publishing solutions,” Ross said.
The ability to sell yourself, develop new skills and offer relevant experience are just some of the ways you can stand out in today’s jobs market.
You should also prepare, dress appropriately and listen to the questions asked to avoid common jobseeker mistakes.
Many jobseekers are failing to stand out and do themselves justice in today’s market. For instance, when an employer recruits, they want a proven performer who can hit the ground running and add immediate value to the business.
This means you need to consolidate the experience you have. Use your skills and experience to show potential employers you are a tried and tested candidate.
If you are a graduate, professional work experience completed during your study is a huge benefit that will help you stand out from the crowd. Even a few weeks completed during semester break gives you an advantage over fellow graduates who have not taken the initiative to gain relevant experience.
Our top five tips to stand out:
1. Write an impressive resume: Make a good first impression. Use a common program, such as MS Word, and start with your contact details. List your education and qualifications and then your work experience in reverse chronological order, beginning with the most recent. If you have your own website profiling your work, include the URL, but do not submit it instead of a resume. Proof-read your resume and take the time to get it right.
2. Sell yourself: Highlight one or two unique selling points to differentiate yourself in your resume and in an interview. For example, were you one of the highest achievers in your university degree? Have you improved customer retention levels or led a project successfully? Have relevant examples and statistics at your fingertips.
3. Experience: The most valuable skill a jobseeker can have is relevant experience. For seasoned professionals, this means matching your existing skills and experience with the job requirements. For graduates, this means gaining relevant industry experience through volunteer work or a study placement.
4. Use your networks: Contact a recruiter, search job websites, use social media sites such as LinkedIn and talk to your networks, industry bodies and university alumni.
5. Develop new skills: Stay on top of industry trends to demonstrate to an employer that as their industry and business moves forward, you are moving forward with it.
Our top five mistakes to avoid:
1. Arriving late for your interview: Interviewers have heard every excuse when it comes to candidates arriving late. There should be no excuse. Anticipate traffic or public transport delays and leave the house earlier than you normally would. Often, you will only get one chance to get your foot in the door.
2. Failure to prepare: Another common jobseeker mistake is to fail to research the organisation prior to your interview. A company’s website, professional bodies, annual reports, your networks, and your recruitment expert will help you gain a better understanding of the business and how your experience and skills match. Use this to prepare for likely interview questions and prepare questions to ask at the end of the interview.
3. Dressing inappropriately: You should look professional, act professionally and dress professionally for your interview.
4. Inability to listen: Listen carefully, give the interviewer your full attention and answer the questions asked. If you are asked behavioural questions, such as “Describe an occasion when …” you need to answer with a relevant real-life example. Do not evade the question as it is more obvious than you think.
5. Inappropriate use of social media: A growing number of employers are now extending their vetting process to include social media, particularly when they feel a candidate might not be what they are portraying themselves to be in an interview. Change your privacy settings and be sensible in the content you post online. Failure to be aware of your digital footprint is a huge mistake in today’s market.
Anyone who has built a career knows that finding your first job is a real challenge. There’s no class in college called, “How to Find a Job That Will Make You Happy,” and many stumble to carve out their own paths in those first couple of years.
When you’re on the verge of graduating, it’s tempting to get buried under online applications and advice from career counselors, all the while forgetting there’s one untapped resource right at our fingertips. Remember those people who raised you?
Your parents are a great resource for the job search process, serving as consultants who help you hone in on your strengths, tap into a wider network, prepare for an interview, and evaluate an offer. But don’t just take our word for it, we spoke with Campus Recruiters at Philips, Brett Romary and Rebecca Abrahams, about how to leverage your parents’ wisdom to make that big jump into your first job a great one:
Get Their Feedback
Your parents, it turns out, know you better than almost anyone. They’re a great resource to help you understand your strengths and passions. And luckily, parents are always there (remember when you couldn’t get away from them fast enough?). They can help with the job search process from the very beginning—from figuring out what cities you want to live in, to what kind of role you want to pursue.
As you consider the route you want to take—and the opportunities that arise from there—parents are a great sounding board to help you process this big life change. Rebecca says, “Young professionals and their parents would benefit from having a good conversation about each opportunity. Is this something that’s aligned with what you did in college and your interests?” You can be a bit more vulnerable (hopefully) with your parents than with your career counselor, which will help you to honestly examine how you feel about a certain opportunity.
That said, make room for your own instincts, too. Sometimes, parents want to sway you in a certain direction; building awareness around that will help you strike a balance between benefiting from their support and making independent decisions.
Tap Into Their Network
Parents have networks, even if they’re informal. These communities may be the key to making inroads into your first job, and they’re worth tapping into. “Making professional introductions is huge,” says Brett. “Parents probably have connections somewhere, whether they work in this field or not. They can really help candidates learn more; the possibilities of these connections are endless.”
Don’t dismiss your parents’ network just because they don’t work in a field related to your interests. Although it’s hard to believe, your parents are social beings. Maybe a neighbor, PTA member, or friend of your dad’s has your dream job. So, ask your parents to mention to their friends (and acquaintances) that you’re looking for a role—you never know what will come of it.
As Brett notes, “These communities often serve as the bridge between students who are just graduating and a job.” And, your parents’ network is one of the easiest ways to get your hat into the ring—you know your parents are dying to brag about your qualifications!
Ask for Professional Prep
Many parents have worked in a professional setting for years, if not decades, so they have a wealth of information about how to navigate a new job. Talk to your parents about the most important career lessons they’ve learned along the way. “Parents can really help their children develop business acumen within the field,” Brett says.
In no situation is this truer than in the interview process. “Young professionals are really nervous because they’ve never interviewed before,” says Brett. “We tell them to practice; if their parents can help prep them at all, it’s a huge plus.”
Set aside time to do a few mock interviews with mom or dad. This kind of exercise will make it easier to get comfortable when you’re in front of a hiring manager, and ask your parents to give you helpful tips to improve your pitch.
When you’re evaluating a compensation package, it’s difficult to know where to even begin. You probably don’t know the difference between HMO and PPO insurance plans or have a clear sense of expectations for vacation days.
Online research can be really helpful, but if your parents have experience negotiating compensation packages, they could be your best resource. Rebecca says, “It can become really overwhelming to assess your first package because you’re not sure what’s the norm. That’s why we encourage students to talk to their parents.”
Beyond helping you assess the package itself, they can give you insight into whether the compensation is something you could really live on. Work with your parents to create a budget around your potential salary to make sure you can cover daily expenses, have savings, and plan for retirement.
As a young professional, you’re in the driver’s seat. But use the knowledge and experience of your parents, and give yourself a boost when you need one most. We bet your parents are going to give you unsolicited advice anyway, so why not solicit the advice you really need—that extra support from your parents could help you launch your career.
Sunshine Coast Council is set to take ownership of the 1 hectare central park within the hugely popular Parklakes 2 residential estate at Bli Bli.
Developed by local property identities Peter Shadforth and Robert Flipp, Parklakes 2 has proven to be one of the most popular residential estates on the Sunshine Coast with the entire estate (435 lots) selling out over a two and a half year period.
Mr Flipp said he was proud of the way the Parklakes 2 community has grown over the past few years and its popularity was largely due to the abundant community amenity in place.
“Over the past few years the Parklakes Community Park has become a popular destination for locals and visitors alike as it includes plenty of space for people to exercise, relax or enjoy a picnic in a safe, family friendly location. There’s also an all abilities playground and The Local café which is open seven days a week serving great food along with live entertainment on a regular basis.
“There’s now around 1,000 people who call Parklakes 2 home so it’s time to transfer ownership over to Council which has been part of the original Development Application. Council will now be responsible for maintaining the park area and I am sure it will continue to grow in popularity with the first stage of the new Good Samaritan Catholic school opening in 2019 with Prep to year 3 and up to year seven commencing,” Mr Flipp said.
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson praised Robert Flipp and Peter Shadforth for creating a unique boutique residential development with a wide range of community infrastructure.
“The inclusion of abundant community amenity within Parklakes 2 highlights how the developer has gone ‘over and above’ what was required from Council in order to leave a lasting legacy for the local community. The central park and associated waterways look fantastic and I am pleased to hear that all of the local amenities were created by local consultants using the latest technology and placemaking strategies. This proves we have talented people right here on the Sunshine Coast who have the capabilities to deliver world class projects,” Mayor Jamieson said.