Friday, May 3, 2013

Job Hunt Begins Before Graduation (Part 2)

Welcome to part two of the "Job Hunt Begins Before Graduation." 

In case you missed the first episode, the following is part two of my journey through "What Color is Your Parachute: A Practical Manual for Job-Hunters and Career-Changers" by Richard N. Bolles (2013 edition). So far, I am progressing quite well in my self-actualization exercises recommended by Richard M. Bolles in his annual series "What Color is Your Parachute." It appears to be a multifaceted and well organized group of exercises designed to take a deeper look into what drives me as a person, and eventually will attempt to match me up with potential careers that will best bit these personality traits and preferences.

At the end of the self-actualization exercises there is a flower diagram that basically sums up the entire person you are onto a single well-organized sheet of paper. This diagram is used to prioritize all the information pulled from the data collected as each exercise is complete; each petal (and the center) representing seven ways of thinking about yourself. So far, I have completed three of the seven petals and I will briefly touch on each of these petals and the implications that occurred to me while filling them out.

Petal #1: My Favorite Knowledges or Fields of Interest
In this section, I was required to think back and take notes on different areas effected by my favorite mediums (mine were ideas, words, music, people, and graphics). It took quite some time for me to think back on all the categories and fill in each place with whatever knowledges I possessed about anything. Turns out I knew more than I remembered I knew, and I think you may find the same result as you break down these parts. The areas included:
  1. What I knew about these favorite mediums that enabled me to work more confidently in that medium.
  2. What I knew from previous jobs
  3. What I knew about outside of work
  4. What fields, careers, or industries (involving these mediums) sound interesting to me 
At the beginning of this exercise, I had decided that I would be left with many blank areas because there was not much that I know. As it turns out, I have picked up way more information in the past than I remembered at first glance. Taking a moment to break down and categorize each item helped tremendously in considering the details rather than the overall picture.

Petal #2: My Favorite Kinds of People to Work With
This petal was fun. I was supposed to think back on all the people I had to work with in the past that simply irritated the crap out of me or left a bad taste in my mouth. What were some of the personality characteristics that they possessed that rubbed me the wrong way. I don't want to mention any names here, although I probably should since they more than deserve it.
Sample of a Completed Flower

Once I broke down those fun adjectives, the next step was to figure out what the opposite of those were and put them into a prioritization chart (a very interesting piece of paper if I ever saw one). In this case, in order of importance to me, I'd prefer to work with people who are positive, honest, polite/professional, supportive, and think 'outside the box.'

Petal #3: What I can do and Love to Do (Favorite Transferable Skills)
The main reason it took so long to relay this next blog post was because of this petal. I place blame squarely on the shoulders of this task because it had multiple parts. To pick out what my seven favorite transferable skills were, the next step was to write seven stories about myself (to myself no less!) in which I had accomplished some task involving a goal, hurdles, and a description of what was done step-by-step, outcome/results, and any measurable/quantifiable statement of the outcome. Whew!

Some of these transferable skills included: Problem solving, planning, studying and observing, communicating, and analyzing. Pair those up with some favorite traits such as creative, unique, enthusiastic, and achievement-oriented, and you start to have a picture of the kind of person is represented on this flower.

In Closing
I still have four more petals to go before I begin the actual job hunt process. Fortunately, I still have time before my August 2014 graduation date to accomplish this goal; but I'd better get on it.

I'll be updating this story upon completion of the last four petals. Looking ahead, I think the most tedious work is behind me. Wish me luck and thanks for reading!

Daniel Wagner.

Click Here to read "Job Hunt Begins Before Graduation (Part 1)"

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