"Career Tips for Teens" is a little book of common sense advice from a Headhunter. It's practical and funny, in a tip-per-page format that when the student is physically strapped down and forced to read it, will find them saved from embarrassing interview mistakes and dead-end career choices. Adults entering the job market or climbing the career ladder wish someone had told them this stuff when they were young.
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Author Phyllis Caves Rawley, CPC (Certified Personnel Consultant) owner of Professional Resources, an executive recruiting, career coaching and training service based in El Paso, TX. Mrs. Rawley is a graduate of UT El Paso with a BA in Political Science. She has worked in the temporary and permanent staffing industry since 1990. Phyllis is a frequent speaker and presenter for students and teachers. She has coached over 30,000 middle and high school students, teachers and counselors about preparing for their careers since 1993.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
First the bad news.
Once you graduate they won’t let you back in to high school. You will be on your own to figure out what you are going to do with your life. Start looking now.
Try it before you’re stuck in it.
Before you decide on a career, check out different jobs by doing a Job Shadow. Ask your counselor or teacher to help you find companies that you can visit to see what the work is like. You may realize that it's not what you thought it would be, and want to try something else.
Take Advanced Placement courses.
Yeah they’re tough, but it may mean free college credits and that could mean a savings to you and/or your parents of $ 300-1,000 per class.
Say goodbye to summer vacations.
You won't get summers off once you start working. Most companies will give full-time employees one week of paid vacation after the first year of working. Enjoy this time while you have it.
Take personality tests.
Find out about yourself, your likes and dislikes before you decide on a career. Nobody can tell you what will make you happy. That's your choice now. Your personality is still forming and now that you’re about to take on more responsibility, it will change even more.
Create a resume for yourself.
Even without a paying job you can start looking at your life the way an employer will. Have you volunteered at church, tutored other kids, taken cool classes in things you like? Then include them on your resume. You want to show adults that you do more than the average kid.
First imagine you have all the money you want. After you buy everything you’ve ever dreamed of, daydream about what you would do next. Would you build things? Would you feed the poor and give money away? Would you create art? Those are the types of jobs that keep you excited about life for a long time, even without the millions of dollars. Do what you love and the money will come.
Wants vs. needs.
You want a new car, but you need transportation. You want that leather coat, but you need something to stay warm. You want to go to the college by the beach, but you need a good education. Your wants can blind you and make you miserable if you don’t get them. Learn to separate your needs from your wants. Make two lists with the following titles: "What I want" and "What I need". You will find it is easier to accomplish the needs list.
Look at your options.
If you are not going to college, look to the technical trades as a future. University is not for everyone, and there are many jobs in trades, manufacturing, and in construction that go unfilled all over the country at great salaries. Go to a community college or a co-op program that allows you to earn as you learn. Many plumbers make as much as teachers.
Strive to do small things well.
Take tasks one at a time and you won’t be so overwhelmed with the whole project.
Observe vocal etiquette.
No matter what career you are destined for, it is essential that you learn to communicate properly. The ability to speak and write well is not an option in the work place. The hip language you use with your friends may alienate you from the adults that are interested in hiring you.
Take a risk.
You will never know what you might have been if you don’t take a risk. You want to act or sing? Go for it! The only sure way to beat a failure is with a try.
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