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Asia Pacific Career Development Association - Career Trends -작성일: 2021-06-02

 
Important Mind-sets for Successful Career Transition
during Vulnerable Periods
By Heather Ko

(link click)
 Career coaching is a professional process that helps people who are preparing their career paths or planning changes in careers so that they can reach the goals they want to achieve from their current positions. Though coaches do their best for clients’ successful career changes, various obstacles hinder fruitful coaching processes due to complicated and various circumstances surrounding adult careers. If a client is in a vulnerable condition, the difficulty of career coaching will become greater because clients going through vulnerable periods tend to try to find the reasons for their situations from easily understandable causes, but not from the underlying ones.  Therefore, it would be meaningful to look at some key mind-sets necessary for successful career transitions of adults.
First, break the fixed idea

He who was a regular worker at the previous company had a strong reluctance to join a new company on a contract basis. There was only one reason. It was that contract workers were often seen as less capable people than regular workers in Korea. He couldn’t hide his anxiety at the thought that transition to a full-time job would be difficult in the future. “What’s more important to your career than people’s view on the contract worker?” When asked by the coach, the client said that his next step is more important than other people’s opinions. Another question followed. ”What is the difference between your current competencies in a contract job compared to when you were a full-time employee?” He explained that he had grown up through the transition because he developed competencies that looked weak previously. In fact, he got this contract work position with a higher salary. After the session, he is more focused on preparing his next movement rather than social reputations. Similar cases can be found easily from those who are in their career transitions. They often hesitate to make an inevitable step because of social stereotypes. They need to draw their focuses to designing and branding their careers rather than common norms.


Second, seek performance rather than ability

A client had received an official suggestion to resign. His boss said it was up to his decision but it was no different from a dismissal. What he struggled with the most was that he didn’t know why. He was not able to understand why he was selected. ”When was the most difficult moment in your company life?” The client was unable to find where to start because he was not sure. He thought he had worked hard every moment and done his best but his works seemed to be somehow unrecognized. ”What needs to be improved to get the recognition you expect?” With the progress of coaching under this agenda, he discovered that his efforts and abilities hadn’t led to meaningful results. One of the important things when developing a career is finding and strengthening the ability to produce the necessary results in any business settings. The client found his own solution after analyzing himself.


Third, approach with a long-term perspective

One of my clients gave birth to two children and had stopped working for about four years. She missed the days when she was actively working before childbirth. However, she cannot see herself working again because she had been away from work for a long time. This concern was even gnawing away her self-confidence. “Do you have any skills or abilities you have been developing for the last years so that you can adapt yourself to changes of your business field?” Based on this question, she started to prioritize goals required for her to return to work. She began to be able to see the time schedule to arrive at her final goal, reemployment, after putting away worries about her career break. Career development is the step-by-step building-up throughout the whole life. When you think it is late, it is the right time to start looking at the rest of your life. Opportunities can come again at any time only to those who are prepared.


Fourth, enhance self-coach

There are many reasons for changing jobs or even careers. Clients looking for a coach have diverse backgrounds and characters. As a result, a career coaching is to be customized to each client to draw up the clear goal which the client really wants and the feasible roadmap for it. This is possible only when the client is able to look into himself or herself accurately and therefore a well-established self-coach of each client is essential. One such client was an engineer expecting to become a middle manager in her department. However, recently she started considering a job change. The reason was that she felt she was not growing up after getting used to her current works while other people of her age were running for their dreams. She wanted to make another challenge before she got older. However, it was a risky movement because she did not have a picture of what change she really wanted and what she was trying to achieve through that change. Therefore it was necessary to train her self-coach to look at herself objectively and to parse accurately the reason of her dissatisfaction with her current career. A well-established self-coach leads to self-leadership and self-control which help a client avoid impulsive decision-making.

We live in an era of rapid change. Moreover, its changing speed became faster under the unexpected pandemic world. Accordingly, many people could not help facing career transitions while experiencing vulnerable periods. Career coaching can be one of the best ways which those in this condition can progress. If a client is not bound by a fixed idea of society and keeps an attitude focused on performance rather than ability itself with the long-term perspective, the client can make a successful career transition more easily. The healthy self-coach inside the client will be of great help throughout this process. Career is not the simple combination of job positions. It is the fruit of a person’s whole life showing the identity of that person. Therefore, you would be able to prepare the future you want by identifying yourself through career coaching.

 
Heather Ko

(lifetreecoach@gmail.com) is the Professional Coach of the coaching company she founded with the motto: Everyone is a Coach. She is also a board member of the Career Consultant Forum in Korea. She studied finance at the Business School of Seoul National University and business coaching at the United Graduate School of Theology of Yonsei University. Based on her rich experiences from more than 2000-hour coaching sessions, she is currently active in various coaching areas such as leadership, career and life. She introduced 'Coaching for Leadership' edited by Marshall Goldsmith et. al. to Korean readers.