How to Structure Effective Career Services - Part 1
How To Structure Effective Career Services, Part 3 of 3

How To Structure Effective Career Services, Part 2 of 3

Copy of Copy of DESIGN (5)In part one of the three-part series, I stated there are three distinct functions that need to be carried out to structure highly effective career services; one crosses over into education.

  1. Transformative learning
  2. Coaching
  3. “Selling” fee-free recruitment services

Part one focused on transformative learning, which you can review here.  This posting, Part Two, focuses on coaching; actually a seminar and group coaching program.

Assuming your students have completed a comprehensive job search effectiveness course as part of the curriculum during their tenure at your school, the next phase is conducting a one-month, postgraduate (yes, postgraduate) seminar and group coaching program.

Many job-seekers remain unsuccessful because they can't figure out what to do. Others move forward in a start-and-stop mode, trying first one idea, then another, and often giving up before they see results regardless of what they were taught in the job search or career decision course.

The seminar and group coaching program I have used successfully is based on the Get Hired NOW!™ program developed originally by C.J. Hayden, MCC, and Frank Traditi.  Get Hired NOW! was designed to meet the need for an easy-to-use program that would simplify the job search process, and help job seekers get into action quickly.

This model works because it gives each participant a list of things to do, a calendar for getting them done, and a method of tracking their progress. With a career services professional as their group leader and coach for the one-month program, they also have the accountability, perspective, and support they need to keep going, work smart, and stay on track.

This seminar and group coaching program can be offered in a variety of ways. It begins with an in-class workshop of two and one-half to three hours in length. The program can also be delivered as a teleclass or webinar.  Although, I’ve found the in-class model to be most effective.  In the seminar, the facilitator reviews the basic principles of job search and helps participants see where they may be stuck or lost in their job search. Then the facilitator takes the participants through the step-by-step process of developing a personalized one-month job search program, using the programming toolkit. Each member's program includes a quantifiable job search goal they wish to achieve in the next month, one to three projects they would like to accomplish, and ten specific actions they will take on a daily or weekly basis.

Following the seminar, the facilitator conducts group coaching sessions. From my experience, two 30 to 45-minute sessions per week for four weeks works best. Limit the coaching sessions to no more than ten participants working together with the facilitator in each session.

In the sessions, participants report their progress on implementing the program and achieving their goals. They receive coaching on blocks or obstacles, brainstorm with the facilitator and other participants for possible solutions, and celebrate their wins. At the end of each coaching session, the facilitator gives a job search thought for the day.

In the coaching session, each participant reports not only how well they did in achieving their goals, but what they have learned about themselves and the job search process. Even those who do not reach their targets get significant value from the program, because of the amount of learning that takes place.

Watch for my next post for Part Three, “Selling” fee-free recruitment services, next week.

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