Are Careers Advisers too humble?


One of my Linkedin careers contacts, Janet Colledge, made an extremely interesting point this week. Following some recent media attention of the sector (not all-together favourable, from what I believe?!), Janet posted online: “We need to start promoting the benefits of professional careers advice…”

Janet strongly believes “clarity of purpose” should be high on the list.

In response, I exclaimed: “For YEARS this topic has vexed me, as someone who dabbled with the DipCG, was one of the “new breed” Connexions Personal Advisers and now trains and accredits Level 3 and 4 Advice and Guidance staff and Level 4 and 6 Careers practitioners.

When WILL the sector (and staff) receive the respect that it (and they) deserve? From my experience, when staff undergo training, they soon realise that “careers” isn’t a cosy chat for half-an-hour and the days when the Geography or PE teacher told them to go and “work down t’pit” or “be a secretary” were nonsensical!

Alas, I often feel we’re going backwards. Only today, I received a call from a lady who’s the school librarian and has been asked to “do careers”. Plus, while I understand it’s great to have different routes into a profession, what WAS wrong with the Diploma in Careers Guidance, back in the day? A well-respected qualification.”

What are YOUR thoughts?

Is “Career Information, Advice and Guidance” still misunderstood by “the world and his wife (and kids!)” and are Advisers too humble to be blowing those proverbial trumpets?


Develop-meant Training Consultants website

Laughable lines from learners in training sessions!

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I’ve been a trainer for the best part of 25 years. I’m STILL amazed by the lines some learners come out with in the training room, thinking me and my colleagues haven’t heard them before. Can you relate to any of these humdingers?!

A delegate barges into the training room for the first time, no introduction, the session hasn’t even started yet and asks: “What time do we finish?”

A small clique of learners sat disgruntled since 9am. YOU know you’re starting at 9:30am. Their MANAGER knows the session starts at 9:30am (he/she had an email confirming “kick off ” weeks ago). You announce: “We’ll get underway at 9:30am folks.” Only to hear: “Well, WE were told it started at 9 o’clock!”

Following Workshop 1, you set the group a task to submit and complete before the second session. It’s now Day 2 and one of the learners approaches you prior to starting and says: “Did you manage to take a look at my work that I emailed at 11.59pm last night?”

“Morning everyone! Before we start, can I just check that you’ve all printed off the workbook I sent you ten days ago via email?” Reply from at least four people: “I didn’t get your email!”

“Hi, hello! It’s Adrian is it? You’re the trainer? Yes? OK! Hmmm…would you mind if I kept my mobile phone on because, I’m SO full of my own self-importance, I’m waiting for a VERY important call and, if I don’t answer it, planet Earth will implode…?”

Slightly embarrassed, half-in-half-out-of-the-doorway: “Excuse me? Is this the session on Sexually Transmitted Infections?!”

“My Manager sent me.”

“Can I have the window open* closed* air conditioning on* air conditioning off* radiator on* radiator off* blinds up* blinds down*?” <delete as applicable!!>

Thanks for completing this evaluation form. What’s the biggest learning point you’ll take away from this training session today? “The sandwiches were rank!”


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