As they go through secondary school or high school, teens spend a lot of time thinking about the future. They think about travel and the places they want to see. They think about their friends and their boyfriends and girlfriends. They think about university or internships or apprenticeships. A tiny percentage of teens already have fledgling businesses at school. They have hundreds of questions. What does the future hold? Will they be able to make money and/or find a job? What if they decide on an occupation and regret it? Teens struggle with finding the answer to these questions. As their parents, you can help and support them by acting as a sounding board and asking the right questions. Each of us brings relevant information, knowledge, and experience to the table based on our own education, which can help direct our teens towards or away from a particular career path.
However, in a world that is constantly and rapidly changing, this may not be enough. Only a few short years ago, occupations such as software and app engineers, social media managers, or sustainability managers didn’t even exist. Today, they are among the most sought after skills employers are seeking. We live in a digital era and it is highly likely that our children will have jobs that aren’t invented yet. As much as they try to, parents can’t keep track of all the latest changes and the implications of these changes for their teen’s future.
With everything that is going on in the world, your teen may be feeling the pressure of it all. In this situation, try to sit without distractions and talk to them. Try understanding how they feel. Ask them where they see themselves in the future? Do they want to work or continue their studies right now? You´ll know whether your child is more or less academic, whether they prefer the indoors or outdoors, whether they like being told what to do or prefer to self-manage and self-direct, whether they love sitting at a desk working or prefer physical, hands-on tasks fixing, building or creating. What do they love to do? What tasks do they dread? Can they take multiple instructions – do this followed by this and this – or do they prefer simple instructions requiring them to do one task at a time? By asking questions, you will form a picture of where they might best be placed in relation to future work. If you lack the time or are struggling to help them figure things out or notice that they themselves are not yet clear about their likes and dislikes vis a vis work, you can seek professional guidance from a teen coach.
Why Your Teen Needs A Career Coach
Although it is in our nature to fight change with every fibre of our body, in order to develop and grow we have to embrace change and adapt to new conditions and new situations. When parents and teens have problems thinking through life choices and money-making opportunities on their own, it’s a sign for a career coach to step in.
Knowledge is Power
Parents already have a lot going on in their lives so they don’t have the time to research and answer all their teens’ questions. Although teens get some career guidance, it is usually traditional and not fit for the current digital and technological era. However, a good coach has all the necessary information and knowledge about the latest demands on the labour market. They explore possibilities and options so they know what is best for your teen. Based on your son or daughter´s interests, they can recommend in which direction your teen should focus their efforts.
After they leave school, teens struggle with so many changes happening all at once. Coaches can help them with this. They can prepare young people in advance so they know what to expect when they finally leave school. This way they can learn to expect and manage anxious feelings and focus on achieving their career goals according to the plan devised in session.