Stages of Career Development

Career development is a process that takes place over the life span and on the assumption that biological, psychological, sociological, and cultural factors influence career choice, changes, and withdrawal across the stages of development. All these are based on development theories.

The career life span is of three stages in an individual’s lifetime. They are..

– The fantasy state involves role playing and imagination.
– The tentative stage reflects a person’s growing awareness of interests and abilities.
– The realistic state entails the identification of a career choice.

Furthermore, the theory is identified four factors that shape an individual’s career decisions. The factors that have an impact on your development are as follows:

– Individual values.
– Emotional factors.
– Amount and kind of education.
– Effect of reality through environmental pressures.

Lifespan Theory

Lifespan theory is developmental and humanistic in nature has been extremely influential in the field.

Lifespan: Development is lifelong and occurs throughout five major life stages. They are infancy, childhood, student life, adulthood, old age and death. Each stage has a unique set of tasks and accounts for the changes and decisions that people make from work entry to retirement.

Life-space: People have skills and talents developed through different life roles, making them capable of a variety of tasks and numerous occupations.

Self-concept: Understanding one’s interests and skills is key to the right career choice and satisfaction. People seek career satisfaction through work roles in which they can express themselves and implement and develop their self-concepts.

Career Counseling

As the process unfolds, so does the client counselor relationship. The following five stages describe a general approach to the career counseling relationship:

– Dealing with change.
– Developing career focus.
– Exploring career options.
– Preparing for job research.
– Obtaining employment.

Like any counseling process that proposes stages of development, those described for the career counseling process also must be viewed as recursive. In each stage of career counseling, there are three areas of focus: exploration, task, and developmental outcomes relevant to the stage.

Dealing With Change: During this first stage, the counselor builds the relationship by providing unconditional positive regard, listening to the client’s expressed needs, exploring the personal emotional issues related to the process, and uncovering possible resistances to career exploration.

Developing Career Focus: When some of the outcomes of the first stage are achieved, the counselor begins to help the client develop career focus. The counselor guides the client in selecting and completing assessments and activities that help the client to pinpoint choices for career exploration.

Exploring Career Options: At the third stage, the counselor takes on the added role of educator and helps the client gain a realistic understanding of the tasks involved in career exploration. This includes personal instruction and directing clients to other resources such as books, websites, or job search groups and clubs.

Preparing for Job Search

While helping the client prepare to a job search, the career counselor continues in the role described in the third stage; however, it becomes important again for the counselor to support the client in interpreting career exploration experiences, gaining additional insight into his or her career identity, and fine-tuning career goals. The counselor also continues to provide practical assistance to develop the client’s job search skills. As well, the counselor begins to shift focus to necessary skills development that will aid the client in preparing for and obtaining employment.

Careers in Community Development

The term community refers to people who are bound together by common interests. Ideally, a person who is already a part of a community is able to lead the others or volunteer services for people in that community. There are a number of exciting and personally rewarding options in community service. You don’t have to be jobless to take on the responsibility. Though there are openings for volunteers and students, there is also ample scope for professionals to pitch in, whenever they can. Among the many careers in community development, there are some that focus on community organizing and finance, while some help in the development of new businesses and business coaching. The many options open for full-time positions as well as for freelancers include:

Organizer of Community Development
As an organizer, you have to help develop and redevelop the existing community. The task involves breaking through barriers and enhancing career advancement opportunities for people within the community, as well as ensuring their lateral development. As an organizer of employment opportunities, you would be responsible for identifying different institutions that could help members in the field they are interested in. Business networking is important to help members fit into desired roles at work. As an organizer, you would first have to study the community, especially if you are not already a part of it. You would need to weigh the pros and cons of the community-defined paradigms and regulations before ushering in change. A careful analysis of self-assessment forms and suitability for a particular vocation would be at the helm of research for each member you help. Your primary responsibility would be to monitor growth and progress and enable the community to remain buoyant even in adversity, while adhering to workplace ethics.

Finance Consultant

Offering your expertise in finance to a community involves a lot of groundwork and networking skills to make the resources required easily accessible. Financial consultancy could address housing, education, business, or any other monetary requirement. You would need to assimilate information and stay updated on the recent developments in the fiscal world. Finance is a sensitive arena and being professional about all dealings is of utmost importance. As an integral part of the community, you would need to handle all dealings meticulously. Even as a volunteer in some community that you are not already a part of, the advice and guidance should be made available from a resource base that is sound and established. The job profile of a Financial Consultant in Community Development is very fulfilling. You get a chance to see the fruits of your labor through advice and guidance, instantly. The love and respect that you gain is immeasurable. This profile in financial management gives you the opportunity to be a part of a network of both, resources and investors. As mediator, the job enables you to help a staggering businessman through business consulting strategies, as well as ensure that funds are accessible dot-on after retirement, in the case of senior citizens.

Community Upliftment and Empowerment Executive

As an executive responsible for community upliftment and empowerment, your primary duties would involve identifying trouble areas and developing a strategy to approach them directly. You could opt for any one arena or take on complete responsibility for fiscal aid, rehabilitation, vocational assistance, and even facilitate education to the student community. As a facilitator for upliftment of the community, you would be interacting with two distinct categories of people, whether or not the community is the one you belong to. One category would comprise those who are recognized within the community and can help you gain access to the other category or group, comprising those who need help. Here too, you could choose to freelance or work full-time.

Educator and Counselor

As one facilitating access to resources for higher education and counseling the student community, your social networking skills would ideally revolve around identifying and tying up with educational institutions, career education forums, and vocational training centers. The job profile enables you to assure the community of a great future, since you would be primarily dealing with children, adolescents, the youth, and adults on the verge of making important decisions pertaining to a vocation. The job descriptions, salary ranges, resources, and volunteer positions are designed for a line of work that is very fulfilling. There are a number of other interesting and career opportunities with non-government organizations or NGOs. All it takes is the right qualifications and social networking skills and the right intent to compliment the philosophies as well as the expectations of any community.