Which Way Should I Go?
When Alice was lost in Wonderland she asked the Cheshire Cat for directions. But Alice had a bigger problem: She didn’t know where she wanted to go. So the cat replied: “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go. Any road should get you there … if you only walk long enough!”
Many job seekers feel a bit like Alice in Wonderland. Without a goal in mind they spend years wandering down employment trails without finding the highway to success. Generally, the people most happy with their employment choices have taken the steps to determine their destination first. Career assessments and interest inventories are two types of tests that can help you find a good career match.
A full career assessment takes the overall picture or who you are and what you like and narrows the paths to help you decide where you want to go. Counselors who help interpret the assessment can guide you through the industry sector options based upon your values, skills, timeframe and aptitude. The more information filters you provide, the more targeted your search becomes. Assessments cover topics like these:
Finding your field ...
• Industry Sector
• Data Driven or People Focused
• Mechanical Aptitude
• Training Timeframe
• Desired Location
This series of questions is geared to help you determine the big picture of your career. It may sound silly to think a test is needed to tell if you like working independently or with a group. However, those who find themselves working with lots of stimulating people when they need quiet and solitude may tell you they’re on the wrong career path. An interest inventory will help you recognize some key indicators for your best work environment:
Do you prefer ...
• People or Paper
• Inside or Outside
• Big Picture Concepts or Detailed Steps
• Stimulation or Solitude
• Service or Structure
There are hundreds of self-assessment tools available.
However, it is best to work with a professional trained to interpret results. See pages 50 and following to find your local college, technical school or workforce board. Each region has a different process, but education and workforce systems in Florida work together to point you in the right direction. Don’t waste time wandering — focus on your destination!