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Career Management and Development
Human Resources » Career Planning


Chrm Message From: tara Total Posts: 37 Join Date: 25/12/2006
Rank: Executive Post Date: 10/01/2007 01:40:46 Points: 185 Location: United States

Dear Barkha & Colleagues,

Personnel activities like screening, training, and appraising serve two basic roles in organizations. First, their traditional role has been to staff the organization-to fill its positions with employees who have the requisite interests, abilities, and skills.

Increasingly, however, these activities are taking on a second role of ensuring that the long-run interests of the employees are protected by the organization and that, in particular, the employee is encouraged to grow and realize his or her full potential. Referring to staffing or personnel management as human resource management reflects this second role. A basic assumption underlying this role is that the employer has an obligation to utilize its employees’ abilities to the fullest and to give all employees a chance to grow and to realize their full potential and to develop successful careers. One way this trend is manifesting itself is in the increased emphasis many firms are placing today on career planning and development.

Activities like personnel planning, screening, and training play a big role in the career development process. Personnel planing for example, can be used not just to forecast open jobs but to identify potential internal candidates and the training they would need to fill these jobs. Similarly, an organization can use its periodic employee appraisals not just for salary decisions but for identifying the development needs of individual employees and ensuring that these needs are met. All the staffing activities, in other words, can be used to satisfy the needs of both the organization and the individual in such a way that they both gain: from improved performance, from a more committed work force and the employee from a richer, a more challenging career.

For example, (1) performance appraisal’s traditional focus has been on rating for the purpose of promotion, discipline, and rewards; using it to provide a career development focus means including development plans and individual goal setting. (2) Similarly, HR planning traditionally focuses on job analysis and satisfying the organization’s staffing needs; adding a career development focus means including information about individual career interests and preferences as well as career path options.

Before proceeding, it would be useful to define some of the terms we will be using throughout this lesson.
(1) Career is a series of work-related positions, paid or unpaid, that help a person grow in job skills, success, and fulfillment. (2) Career development is the lifelong series of activities (such as workshops) that contributes to a person’s career exploration, establishment, success, and fulfillment.

(3) Career planning is the deliberate process through which someone becomes aware of personal skills, interests, knowledge, motivations, and other characteristics; acquires information about opportunities and choices; identifies career-related goals; and establishes action plans to attain specific goals.

Roles in Career Development:
The individual, the manager, and the organization all have roles in the individual’s career development. Ultimately it is the (1) individual who must accept responsibility for his or her own career, assess interests, skills, and values; seek out career information and resources; and generally take those steps that must be taken to ensure a happy and fulfilling career. Within the organization the (2) individual’s manager plays a role, too. The manger should provide timely and objective performance feedback, offer development discussions, for instance. The manager acts as a coach, appraiser, advisor, and referral agent, for instance, listening to and clarifying the individual’s career plans, giving feedback, generating career options, and linking the employee to organizational resources and career options.

Finally, as we’ll also see in this lesson, (3) the employer plays a career development role. For example, it should provide career-oriented training and development opportunities, offer career information and career programs, and give employees a variety of career options. Ultimately, as we’ll see, employers need not and should not provide such career-oriented activities purely out of altruism. Most employees will ultimately grade their employers on the extent to which the organization allowed them to become the people they believed they had the potential to become. And that will help determine their commitment to their employers and their overall job satisfaction.

Factors that affect career choices
(1) Career Management - responsibilities of the individual himself
Steps in planning a career for you:
(1) The first step in planning a career for yourself or someone else is to learn as much as possible about the person’s interests, aptitudes, and skills.

(2) Identify the person’s career stage
Each person’s career goes though stages, and the stage you are in will influence your knowledge of and preference for various occupations. The main stages of this career cycle follows.

-Growth stage: The growth stage lasts roughly from birth to age 14 and is a period during which the person develops a self-concept by identifying with and interacting with other people such as family, friends, and teachers. Toward the beginning of this period, role playing is important, and children experiment with different ways of acting; this helps them to form impressions of how other people react to different behaviors and contributes to their developing a unique self-concept or identify. Toward the end of this stage, the adolescent (who by this time has developed preliminary ideas about what his or her interests and abilities are) begins to think realistically about alternative occupations.

-Exploration stage: The exploration stage is the period (roughly from ages 15 to 24) during which a person seriously explores various occupational alternatives. The persons attempts to match these alternatives with what he or she has learned about them and about his or her own interests and abilities from school, leisure activities, and work. Tentative broad occupational choices are usually made during the beginning of this period. Then toward the end of this period, a seemingly appropriate choice is made and the person tries out for a beginning job. Probably the most important task the person has in this and the preceding stage is that of developing a realistic understanding of his or her abilities and talents. Similarly, the person must make sound educational decisions based on reliable sources of information about occupational alternatives.

- Establishment stage: The establishment stage spans roughly ages 24 to 44 and is the heart of most people’s work lives. During this period, it is hoped a suitable occupation is found and the person engages in those activities that help him or her earn a permanent place in it. Often and particularly in the professions, the person locks on to a chosen occupation early. But in most cases, this is a period during which the person is continually testing his or her capabilities and ambitions against those of the initial occupational choice.

The establishment stage is itself comprised of three substages.
(a) The trial substage. Lasts from about ages 25 to 30. During this period, the person determines whether or not the chosen field is suitable; if it is not, several changes might be attempted. Roughly between the ages of 30 and 40, the person goes through a stabilization substage.

(b) The stabilization substage. Here firm occupational goals are set and the person does more explicit career planning to determine the sequence of promotions, job changes, and/or any educational activities that seem necessary for accomplishing these goals. Finally, somewhere between the mid-thirties and mid-forties, the person may enter the mid career crisis substage.

(c) The mid career crisis substage. During this period, people often make a major reassessment of their progress relative to original ambitions and goals. They may find that they are not going to realize their dreams (such as being company president) or that, having been accomplished, their dreams are not all they were purported to be. Also during this period, people have to decide how important work and career are to be in their life. It is often during this mid career substage that the person is faced for the first time with difficult choices between what he or she really wants, what really can be accomplished and how much must be sacrificed to achieve it.

-Maintenance stage. Between the ages of 45 to 65 , many people simply slide from the stabilization substage into the maintenance stage. During this latter period, person has typically created a place in the world of work and most efforts are directed at maintaining that place.

-Decline stage. As retirement age approaches, there is often a deceleration period in the decline stage. Here many people face the prospect of having to accept reduced levels of power and responsibility and learn to accept and develop new roles as mentor and confidante for those who are younger. There is then the more or less inevitable retirement, after which the person finds alternative uses for the time and effort formerly expended on his or her occupation.

-Retirement stage. This retirement from his career.

-Second career stage. After retirement some people may start a completely different career from what they did earlier. ex: Consultants, Trainers, Advisors etc.

(3) Identify occupational orientation
Career-counseling expert John Holland says that a person’s personality (including values, motives, and needs) is another important determinant of career choices. For example, a person with a strong social orientation might be attracted to careers that entail interpersonal rather than intellectual or physical activities and to occupations such as social work. Based on research with his Vocational Preference Test (VPT), Holland found six basic personality types or orientations.

1. Realistic orientation. These people are attracted to occupations that involve physical activities requiring skill, strength, and coordination. Examples include forestry, farming, and agriculture.

2. Investigative orientation. Investigative people are attracted to careers that involve cognitive activities (thinking, organizing, understanding ) rather than affective activities (feeling, acting, or interpersonal and emotional tasks). Examples include biologist, chemist, and college professor.

3. Social orientation. These people are attracted to careers that involve interpersonal rather than intellectual or physical activities. Examples include clinical psychology, foreign service, and social work.

4. Conventional orientation. A conventional orientation favors careers that involve structured, rule-regulated activities, as well as careers in which it is expected that the employee subordinate his or her personal needs to those of the organization. Examples include accountants and bankers.

5. Enterprising orientation. Verbal activities aimed at influencing others are attractive to enterprising personalities. Examples include managers, lawyers, and public relations executives.

6. Artistic orientation. People here are attracted to careers that involve self-expression, artistic creation, expression of emotions, and individualistic activities. Ex: include artists, advertising executives, and musicians.

Most people have more than one orientation (they might be social, realistic, and investigative), and Holland believes that the more similar or compatible these orientations are, the less internal conflict or indecision a person will face in making a career choice. To help illustrate this, Holland suggests placing each orientation in one corner of a hexagon, as in Figure D. As you can see, the model has six corners, each of which represents one personal orientation (for example, enterprising ). According to Holland’s research, the closer two orientations are in this figure, the more compatible they are. Holland believes that if your number-one and number-two orientations fall side by side, you will have an easier time choosing a career. However, if your orientations turn out to be opposite (such as realistic and social), you may experience more indecision in making a career choice because your interests are driving you toward very different types of careers. In Table E, we have summarized some of the occupations that have been found to be the best match for each of these six personal occupational orientations.

(4) Identify skills
Successful performance depends not just on motivation but on ability too. You may have a conventional orientation, but whether you have the skills to be an accountant, banker, or credit manager will largely determine which specific occupation you ultimately choose. Therefore, you have to identify your/employee skills.

An exercise: (1) One useful exercise for identifying occupational skills is to take a blank piece of paper and write the heading ‘The Most Enjoyable Occupational Tasks I Have Had.’ Then write a short essay that describes the tasks. Make sure to go into as much detail as you can about your duties and responsibilities and what it was about each task that you found enjoyable. (2) Next, on other sheets of paper, do the same thing for two other tasks you have had. Now go through your three essays and underline the skills that you mentioned the most often. For example, did you enjoy putting together and coordinating the school play when you worked in the principal’s office one year ? Did you especially enjoy the hours you spent in the library doing research for your boss when you worked one summer as an office clerk ?

Aptitudes and special Talents: For career planning purpose, a person’s aptitudes are usually measured with a test battery such as the general aptitude test battery (GATB). This instrument measures various aptitudes including intelligence and mathematical ability. Considerable work has been done to relate aptitudes, such as those measured by the GATB, to specific occupations. For example, the US Department of Labour’s Dictionary of Occupational Titles lists the nature and titles of hundreds of occupations, along with aptitudes required for success in these occupations.

(5) Identify career anchors
Edgar Schein says that career planning is a continuing process of discovery-one in which a person slowly develops a clearer occupational self-concept in terms of what his or her talents, abilities, motives, needs, attitudes, and values are. Schein also says that as you learn more about yourself, it becomes apparent that you have a dominant career anchor, a concern or value that you will not give up if a choice has to be made. Career anchors, as their name implies, are the pivots around which a person’s career swings; a person becomes conscious of them as a result of learning about his or her talents and abilities, motives and needs, and attitudes and values. Based on his research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Schein believes that career anchors are difficult to predict ahead of time because they are evolutionary and a product of a process of discovery. Some people may never find out what their career anchors are until they have to make a major choice-such as whether to take the promotion to the headquarters staff or strike out on their own by starting a business. It is at this point that all the person’s past work experiences, interests, aptitudes, and orientations converge into a meaningful pattern (or career anchor) that helps show what is personally the most important in driving the person’s career choices.

Based on his study of MIT graduates, Schein identified five career anchors:
(1) Technical/Functional Career Anchor. People who had a strong technical/functional career anchor tended to avoid decisions that would drive them toward general management. Instead they made decisions that would enable them to remain and grow in their chosen technical or functional fields.

(2) Managerial Competence as a Career Anchor. Other people show a strong motivation to become managers and their career experience enabled them to believe that they had the skills and values required to rise to such general management positions. A management position of high responsibility is their ultimate goal. When pressed to explain why they believed they had the skills necessary to gain such positions, many in schein’s research sample answered that they were qualified for these jobs because of what they saw as their competencies in a combination of three areas: (1) analytical competence (ability to identify, analyze, and solve problems under conditions of incomplete information and uncertainty); (2) interpersonal competence (ability to influence, supervise, lead, manipulate, and control people at all levels); and (3) emotional competence (the capacity to be stimulated by emotional and interpersonal crises rather than exhausted or debilitated by them, and the capacity to bear high levels of responsibility without becoming paralyzed.

(3) Creativity as a Career Anchor. Some of the graduates had gone on to become successful entrepreneurs. To Schein these people seemed to have a need ‘to build or create something that was entirely their own product-a product or process that bears their name, a company of their own, or a personal fortune that reflect their accomplishments.

(4) Autonomy and independence as Career Anchors. Some seemed driven by the need to be on their own, free of the dependence that can arise when a person elects to work in a large organization where promotions, transfers and salary decisions make them subordinate to others. Many of these graduates also had a strong technical/functional orientation. However, instead of pursuing this orientation in an organization, they had decided to become consultants, working either alone or as part of a relatively small firm. Others had become professors of business, free-lance writers, and proprietors of a small retail business.

(5) Security as a Career Anchor. A few of the graduates were mostly concerned with long-run career stability and job security. They seemed willing to do what was required to maintain job security, a decent income, and a stable future in the form of a good retirement program and benefits.

For those interested in geographic security, maintaining a stable, secure career in familiar surroundings was generally more important than was pursuing superior career choices, if choosing the latter meant injecting instability or insecurity into their lives by forcing them to pull up roots and move to anther city. For others, security meant organizational security. They might today opt for government jobs, where tenure still tends to be a way of life. They were much more willing to let their employers decide what their careers should be.

Assessing Career Anchors. To help you identify career anchors, take a few sheets of blank paper and write out your answers to the following question:

1.What was your major area of concentration in high school ? Why did you choose that area ? How did you feel about it ?
2.What is (or was) your major area of concentration in college ? Why did you choose that area ? How did you feel about it?
3.What was your first job after school ? (Include military if relevant.) What were you looking for in your first job ?
4.What were your ambitions or long-range goals when you started your career ? Have they changed ? When ? Why ?
5.What was your first major change of job or company ? What were you looking for in your next job ?
6.What was your next major change of job, company or career ? Why did you initiate or accept it ? What were you looking
for ? (Do this for each of your major changes of job, company, or career.)
7.As you look back over your career, identify some times you have especially enjoyed. What was it about those times that
you enjoyed ?
8.As you look back, identify some times you have not especially enjoyed. What was it about those times you did not enjoy?
9.Have you ever refused a job move or promotion ? Why ?
10.Now review all your answers carefully, as well as the descriptions for the five career anchors. Based on your answers to
the questions, rate each of the anchors from 1 to 5; 1 equals low importance, 5 equals high importance.

(6) What Do You Want to Do ?
We have explained occupational orientations, skills, and career anchors and the role these play in choosing a career. But there is at least one more exercise you should try that can prove enlightening. Answer the question: ‘If you could have any kind of job, what would it be ?’ Invent your own job if need be, and don’t worry about what you can do-just what you want to do.

(7) Identify High-Potential Occupations
Learning about yourself is only half the job of choosing an occupation. You also have to identify those occupations that are right (given your occupational orientations, skills, career anchors, and occupational preferences) as well as those that will be in high demand in the years to come.

Find out about occupations and careers. Investigating occupations can take hours (or perhaps days or weeks) of library research.

There are two basic things you (or your employee) can and should do to improve the career decisions you make. (1) First, take charge of your own career by understanding that there are major decisions to be made, which require considerable personal planing and effort. In other words you cannot leave your choices in the hands of others but must decide where you want to go in terms of a career and what job moves and education are required to get there. (2) Second, become an effective diagnostician. Determine (through career counseling, testing, self-diagnostic books, and so on) what your talents or values are and how these fit with the sorts of careers you are considering. In other words, the key to career planning is self-insight-into what you want out of a career, into your talents and limitations, and into your values and how they will fit with the alternatives you are considering.

(2) Career Management - responsibilities of the manager and employer
(1) Should give career management guidelines
Along with the employee, the person’s manager and employer both have career management responsibilities.

Guidelines here include:
(1) Avoid reality shock. Reality shock refers to the results of a period that may occur at the initial career entry when the new employee’s high job expectations confront the reality of a boring, unchanging job. Perhaps at no other stage in the person’s career is it more important for the employer to be career development-oriented than at the initial entry stage, when the person is recruited, hired, and given a first assignment. For the employee this is a period during which he or she has to develop a sense of confidence, learn to get along with the first boss and with coworkers, learn how to accept responsibility, and most important, gain an insight into his or her talents, needs, and values as they relate to initial career goals. For the new employee, in other words, this is (or should be) a period of reality testing during which his or her initial hopes and goals first confront the reality of organizational life and of the person’s talents and needs. For many first-time workers, this turns out to be a disastrous period, one in which their often naive expectations first confront the realities of organizational life. The young MBA or Chartered Accountant, for example, might come to the first job seeking a challenging, exciting assignment in which to apply the new techniques learned in school and to prove his or her abilities and gain a promotion. In reality, however, the trainee is often turned off by being relegated to an unimportant low-risk job where he or she ‘can’t cause any trouble while being tried out’; or by the harsh realities of interdepartmental conflict and politicking; or by a boss who is neither rewarded for nor trained in the unique mentoring tasks needed to properly supervise new employees.

(2) Provide challenging initial Jobs. Most experts agree that one of the most important things you can do is provide new employees with challenging first jobs. In one study of young managers at AT&T, for example, the researchers found that, more challenging a person’s job was in his or her first year with the company the more effective and successful the person was even five or six years later. Based on his own research, Hall contends that challenging initial jobs provide ‘one of the most powerful yet uncomplicated means of aiding the career development of new employees.’ In most organizations, however, providing such jobs seems more the exception than the rule. In one survey of research and development organizations, for example, only 1 of 22 companies had a formal policy of giving challenging first assignments. This imbalance as one expert has pointed out, is an example of ‘glaring mismanagement’ when one considers the effort and money invested in recruiting, hiring, and training new employees. Some firms ‘front-load’ the job challenge by giving new employees considerable responsibility.

(3) Provide realistic job previews in recruiting. Providing recruits with realistic previews of what to expect once they begin working in the organization-ones that describe both the attractions and also possible pitfalls-can be an effective way of minimizing reality shock and improving their long-term performance. Schein points out that one of the biggest problems recruits and employers encounter during the crucial entry stage is getting accurate information in a ‘climate of mutual selling’. The recruiter (anxious to hook good candidates) and the candidate (anxious to present as favorable an impression as possible) often give and receive unrealistic information during the interview. The result is that the interviewer may not form a clear picture of the candidate’s career goals, while at the same time the candidate forms an unrealistically favorable image of the organization. Realistic job previews can boost the survival rate among employees who are hired for relatively complex jobs like management trainee, salesperson, or life insurance agent.

(4) Be demanding. There is often a ‘pygmalion effect’ in the relationship between a new employee and his or her boss. In other words, the more you expect and the more confident and supportive you are of your new employees, the better they will perform. Therefore, as two experts put it, ‘Don’t assign a new employee to a ‘dead wood’ undemanding, or unsupportive supervisor. Instead choose specially trained, high-performing, supportive supervisors who can set high standards for new employees during their critical first year.

(5) Provide periodic job rotation and job pathing. The best way new employees can test themselves and crystallize their career anchors is to try out a variety of challenging jobs. By rotating to jobs in various specializations-from financial analysis to production to human resource, for example-the employee gets an opportunity to assess his or her aptitudes and preferences. At the same time, the organization gets a manager with a broader multifunctional view of the organisation. One extension of this is called job pathing, which means selecting carefully sequenced job assignments.

(6) Do career-oriented performance appraisals. Edgar Schein says that supervisors must understand that valid performance appraisal information is in the long run more important than protecting the short-term interests of one’s immediate subordinates. Therefore, he says, supervisors need concrete information regarding the employee’s potential career path-information, in other words, about the nature of the future work for which he or she is appraising the subordinate, or which the subordinate desires.

(7) Provide career planning workshops and career planning workbooks. Employers also should take steps to increase their employees’ involvement and expertise in planning and developing their own careers. One option here is to organize periodic career planning workshops. A career planning workshop has been defined as ‘a planned learning event in which participants are expected to be actively involved, completing career planning exercises and inventories and participating in career skills practice sessions.’ It discusses what is career planning, self assessments, environmental assessments, goal setting for self, and developing career action planning.

A career planning workbook may be distributed to employees either as part of a workshop or as an independent career planning aid. This career planning workbook is ‘a printed guide that directs its users through a series of assessment exercises, models, career directions, discussions, guidelines, actioning planning and other information to support career planning.’ It is usually self paced, so that the employees can complete the exercise at their own pace.

( Provide opportunities for mentoring. Mentoring can be defined as ‘the use of an experienced individual [the mentor] to teach and train someone [the protege] with less knowledge in a given area’. Through individualized attention ‘the mentor transfers needed information, feedback, and encouragement to the protege..and in that way the opportunities for the protege to optimize his or her career success are improved.’ Organizational mentoring may be (1) formal mentoring or (2) informal mentoring. Informal mentoring, of course, middle-and senior-level managers will often voluntarily take up-and-coming employees under their wings not only to train them but to give career advice and to help them steer around political pitfalls. However, many employers also establish formal mentoring programs. Here employers actively encourage mentoring relationships to take place and may in fact pair proteges with potential mentors. Training-perhaps in the form of instructional manuals-may be provided to facilitate the mentoring process and in particular to aid both mentor and protege in understanding their respective responsibilities in the mentoring relationship.

(2) Should manage promotions and transfers
(1) Making promotion decisions
Employers must decide on what basis to promote employees, and the way these decisions are made will affect the employees’ motivation, performance, and commitment.

-Decision 1: Is seniority or competence the rule ? Probably the most important decision is whether promotion will be based on seniority or competence, or some combinations of the two. From the point of view of motivation, promotion based on competence is best. However, your ability to use competence as a sole criterion depends on several things, most notably whether or not your firm is unionized or governed by civil service requirements. Union agreements often contain a clause that emphasizes seniority in promotions, such as: ‘In the advancement of employees to higher paid jobs when ability, merit, and capacity are equal, employees with the highest seniority will be given preference.’ Although this might seen to leave the door open for giving a person with less seniority but slightly better ability the inside track for a job, labour arbitrators have generally held that when clauses such as these are binding only substantial difference in abilities can be taken into account. In one case, for example, the arbitrator ruled that seniority should be disregarded only when an employee with less seniority stood ‘head and shoulders above the employees with greater seniority.’ Similarly, many organizations in the public sector are governed by civil service regulations that emphasize seniority rather than competence as the basis for promotion.

-Decision 2: How is competence measured ? If promotion is to be based on competence, how will competence be defined and measured ? Defining and measuring past performance is a fairly straightforward matter: The job is defined, standards are set, and one or more appraisal tools are used to record the employee’s performance. But promotion also requires predicting the person’s potential; thus, you must have a valid procedure for predicting a candidate’s future performance. Many employers simply use prior performance as a guide and extrapolate, or assume, that based on the person’s prior performance he or she will perform well on the new job. This is the simplest procedure to use. On the other hand some employers use tests to evaluate promotable employees and to identify those employees with executive potential. Others use assessment centers to assess management potential.

-Decision 3: Is the process formal or informal ? Next and particularly if you decide to promote based on competence, you have to decide whether the promotion process will be formal or informal. Many employers still depend on an informal system. Here the availability and requirements of open positions are kept secret. Promotion decisions are then made by key managers from among employees they know personally and also from among those who, for one reason or another, have impressed them. The problem is that when you don’t make employees aware of the jobs that are available, the criteria for promotion, and how promotion decisions are made, the link between performance and promotion is cut. The effectiveness of promotion as a reward is thereby diminished. Many employers therefore do establish formal, published promotion policies and procedures. Here employees are generally provided with a formal promotion policy statement that describes the criteria by which promotions are awarded. Formal systems often include a job-posting policy. This states that open positions and their requirements will be posted and circulated to all employees. Many employers also compile detailed information about the qualifications of employees, while others use work force replacement charts. Computerized information systems can be especially useful for maintaining qualifications inventories on hundred or thousands of employees. The net effect of such actions is twofold: (1) An employer ensures that all qualified employees are considered for openings; and (2) Promotion becomes more closely linked with performance in the minds of employees.

-Decision 4: Vertical, horizontal, or other ? Finally, employers are increasingly having to deal with the question of how to ‘promote’ employees in an era in which higher-level jobs are less available. On the one hand, layoffs due to mergers eliminated many of the higher-management positions that employees might normally aspire to, as has the flattening of most organization charts. On the other hand, worker empowerment and a related emphasis on technological expertise have created cadres of highly trained professionals, technicians, and first-line workers who aspire to higher-level positions but find their upward movement blocked by a dearth of openings. Several options are available here. (1) Some firms, such as the exploration division of British petroleum, have created two parallel career paths, one for managers and another for ‘individual contributors’ such as engineers. In that way individual contributors, such as highly accomplished engineers, can move up to non supervisory but still more senior positions such as ‘senior engineer.’ These jobs have most of the perks and financial rewards attached to management-track positions at that level. (2) Another option is to provide career development opportunities for an individual, either by moving the person horizontally or even within the same position he or she currently holds. Horizontally, for instance, a production employee might be moved to HR in order to give him or her an opportunity to develop new skills and test and challenge aptitudes. (3) And, in a sense, ‘promotions’ are possible even leaving the person in the same job: for example, some job enrichment is usually possible, and the firm can provide training that increases the opportunity for assuming increased responsibility.

(2) Handling transfers
-Reasons for transfers. A transfer is a move from one job to another, usually with no change in salary or grade. Employees may seek transfers for personal enrichment, for more interesting jobs, for greater convenience- better hours, location of work, and so on - or for jobs offering greater possibilities for advancement. Employers may transfer a worker in order to vacate a position where he or she is no longer needed, to fill one where he or she is needed, to retain a senior employee, or more generally to find a better fit for the employee within the firm. Finally, many firms today are endeavoring to boost productivity by eliminating management layers. Transfers are thus increasingly a way to give employees who might have nowhere else to move in their firms opportunities for diversity of job assignment and therefore, personal growth.

-Effect on family life. Many firms have had policies of routinely transferring employees from local, either to give their employees more exposure to a wide range of jobs or to fill open positions with trained employees. Such easy-transfer policies have fallen into disfavor, however. This is partly because of the cost of relocating employees (paying moving expenses, buying back the employee’s current home, and perhaps financing his or her next home, for instance) and partly because it was assumed that frequent transfers had a bad effect on an employee’s family life. One study suggests that the latter argument, at least, is without merit. The study compared the experiences of ‘model’ families who had moved on the average of once every two years with ‘stable’ families who had lived in their communities for more than eight years. In general, the stable families were no more satisfied with their marriages and family life or children’s well-being than were the mobile families. In fact, mobile men and women believed their lives to be more interesting and their capabilities greater than did stable men and women. Like wise, they were more satisfied with their family lives and marriage than were stable men and women. However, mobility was associated with dissatisfaction with social relationships among men and women (for instance, in terms of opportunities to make friends at work and in the community). Developing new social relationships was cited as a problem for children of mobile parents, with missing old friends and making new friends a bigger problem for teenagers than for young children. The major finding, however, was that there were few differences between mobile and stable families. Few families in the mobile group believed moving was easy. However, these families were as satisfied with all aspects of their lives (except social relationships) as were stable families.

(3) Retirement
Retirement for most employees is a bittersweet experience. For some it is the culmination of their careers, a time when they can relax and enjoy the fruits of their labor without worrying about the problems of work. For others, it is the retirement itself that is the trauma, as the once busy employee tries to cope with suddenly being ‘nonproductive’ and with having the strange (and not entirely pleasant) experience of being home every day with nothing to do. For many retirees, in fact, maintaining a sense of identity and self-worth without a full-time job is the single most important task they’ll face. And it’s one that employers are increasingly trying to help their retirees cope with as a logical last step in the career management process.

-Pre retirement counseling. About 30% of the employers in one survey said they had formal preretirement programs aimed at easing the passage of their employees into retirement. The most common pre retirement counseling topics were:
Explanation of social security benefits -Living arrangements
Leisure time -Psychological adjustments
Finances and investment -Second careers outside the company
Health -Second careers inside the company

Another important trend here is of granting part-time employment to employees as an alternative to outright retirement. Several recent surveys of blue and white-collar employees showed that about half all employees over age 55 would like to continue working part-time after they retire, and some employers do build such options into their career management processes.

(3) Career Management - responsibilities of the individual himself
Finding the right job
Helping you get the right job
You have identified your occupational orientation, skills and carer anchors and have picked out the occupation you want and made plans for a career. And (if necessary) you have embarked on the required training. Your next step is to find a job that you want in the company and locale in which you want to work. Following are techniques for doing so.

(1) Job search techniques
-Do you own research. Perhaps the most direct way of unearthing the job you want, where you want, is to pick out the geographic area in which you want to work and find out all you can about the companies in that area that appeal to you, and the people you have to contact in those companies to get the job you want.
-Personal contacts. According to one survey, the most popular way to seek job interviews is to rely on personal contacts such as friends and relatives. Let as many responsible people as you can know that you are in the market for a job and specifically what kind of job you want. (Beware, though, if you are currently employed and don’t want your job search getting back to your current boss; if that is the case, better just pick out two or three very close friends and tell them, it is absolutely essential that they be discreet in looking for a job for you.) No matter how close your friend or relatives are to you, by the way, you don’t want to impose too much on them by shifting the burden of your job search to them. It is sometimes best just to ask them for the name of someone they think you should talk to in the kind of firm in which you’d like to work, and then do the digging yourself.

-Answering Advertisements. Most experts agree that answering ads is a low probability way to get a job, and it becomes increasingly less likely that you will get a job this way as the level of job increases. In responding to ads be sure to create the right impression with the materials you submit, check the title, style, grammer, neatness and so forth. Check your resume to make sure it is geared to the job for which you are applying in your cover letter, be sure to have a paragraph of so in which you specifically address why your background and accomplishments are appropriate to the job being advertised. You must respond clearly to the company’s identified needs. Be very careful in replying to blind ads, however (those with just a post office box address). There is always the chance that you can be trapped in to responding to your own firm.

-Employment agencies. Agencies are especially good at placing people. Their fees for professional and management are usually paid by the employer. Assuming you know the job you want, review eight or so back issues of the Sunday classified ads in your library to identify the agencies that consistency handle the positions you want. Approach three or four initially preferably in response to specific ads.

-Executive recruiters. Executive recruiters are retained by employers to seek out top talent for their clients and their fees are always paid by the employer. They do not do career counselling, but if you know the job you want it pays to contact a few. Send your resume and a cover letter summarising your job objective in precise terms, including job title and work related accomplishments, current salary, and salary requirements.

-Career counsellors. Career counsellors will not help you find a job per se: rather they specialize in career counselling.

-Executive marketing consultants. They manage your job hunting campaign. The processes may involve months of weekly meetings. Services include resume and letter writing, interview skill building, and developing a full job hunting campaign. Before approaching a consultant, though, you should definitely do an in-depth self appraisal.

(2) Writing your resume
Your resume is probably your most important selling document, one that can determine whether you ‘make the cut’ and get offered a job interview. Here are some resume pointers, as offered by employment counselors.

-Introductory information. Start your resume with your name, address, and telephone number. Using your office phone number, by the way, can indicate either that (1) your employer knows you are leaving or (2) you don’t care whether he or she find out. You’re usually better off using your home phone number.

-Personal Data. Put personal data regarding age, marital status, next. Finally, two last points. First, do not produce a slipshod resume: Avoid overcrowded pages, difficult-to-read copies, typographical errors, and other problems of this sort. Produce a new resume for job you are applying for, gearing your job objective and worth statements to the job you want.

-Job scope. Indicate the scope of your responsibility in each of your previous jobs, starting with your most recent position. For each of your previous jobs, write a paragraph that show job title, whom you reported to directly and indirectly, who reported to you, how many people reported to you, the operational and human resource budgets you controlled, and what your job entailed.

-Your accomplishments. Next (and this is very important) indicate your ‘worth’ in each of the positions you held. This is the heart of your resume. It shows for each of your previous jobs: (1) the concrete action you took and why you took it and (2) the specific result of your action. For example, ‘As production supervisor, I introduced a new process to replace costly hand soldering of component parts. The new process reduced assembly time per unit from 30 to 10 minutes and reduced labor costs by over 60%.’. Use several of these worth statements for each job.

-Length. Keep your resume to two pages or less, unless it is a detailed resume. List education, personal background (hobbies, interests, associations) and extra curricular activities on the last page.

-Make your resume readable. There are several guidelines to keep in mind for writing readable resumes. These can be summarized as follows:
-Use font type no smaller than 10 points and no larger than 14 points.
-Use font type styles that work well for resumes and can be easily read, such as Futura, Times Roman, Modern etc.
-Submit high-resolution documents. Documents produced on a laser printer work best. Sometimes faxes are not clear enough.
-Make sure to present your qualifications using powerful key words appropriate to the job or jobs which you are applying. For example, trainers might use key words and phrases such as: computer-based training, interactive video, and group facilitator.

(3) Handing the Interview
You have done all your homework and now the big day is almost here: you have an interview next week with the person who is responsible for hiring for the job you want. What do you have to do to excel in the interview ? Here are some suggestions.

-Prepare, prepare, prepare. First remember that preparation is essential. Before the interview, learn all you can about the employer, the job, and the people doing the recruiting. At the library, look through business periodicals to find out what is the happening in the employer’s field. Who is the competition ? How are they doing ?

-Uncover the interviewer’s needs. Spend as little time as possible answering your interviewer’s first questions and as much time as possible getting the person to describe his or her needs: what the person is looking to get accomplished and the type of person needed. Use open-ended questions, such as ‘Could you tell me more about that ?’

-Relate yourself to the person’s needs. Once you have a handle on the type of person your interviewer is looking for and the sorts of problems he or she wants solved, you are in a good position to describe your own accomplishments in terms of the interviewer’s needs. Start by saying something like, ‘One of the problem areas you’ve indicated is important to you is similar to a problem I once faced.’ Then state the problem, describe your solution, and reveal the results.

-Think before answering. That answering a question should be a three-step process:
(1) pause, (2) think, (3) speak. Pause to make sure you understand what the interviewer is driving at, think about how to structure your answer, and then speak. In your answer, try to emphasize how hiring you will help the interviewer solve his or her problem.

-Make a good appearance and show enthusiasm. Appropriate clothing, good grooming, a firm handshake, and the appearance of controlled energy are important.

-First impression count. Studies of interviews show that in almost 80% of the cases, interviewers make up their minds about the applicant during the first few minutes of the interview. A good first impression may turn to bad during the interview, but it is unlikely. Bad first impression are almost impossible to overcome.

Cheers

Tara


Chrm Message From: hrtech Total Posts: 27 Join Date: 25/12/2006  
Rank: Executive Post Date: 10/01/2007 01:46:24 Points: 135 Location: United States

After a detailed extract on the career management side, let me set out below is TMP/Hudson’s Career Management framework and methodology. In brief effective Career Management is about the successful meeting of individual and organisational responsibilities. A successful organisational Career Management framework must be culturally sensitive; is at the one time individual and global (within a company context); is dynamic.

The framework for the individual is effective as a stand-alone process or as a subset of an organisational system. Employees will have unique and individual needs, and the process outlined here is by no means prescriptive.

The elements of the individual framework are:

Step1: Looking Back – Overview of Life and Career Developing a clear understanding how a person arrived at his/her current career ‘location’ is a critical first step in future career planning.

Step2: The Close-up View - This step can also be described as a Career Audit and includes an in-depth assessment of values, skills, work experience and preferences, health, career drivers, attributes, learning style, and image. The outcome is a clear view of the ‘career package’ on offer as perceived by others. In some situations this step provides a timely reality check.

Step3: The Future View - The Future View deals with personal change management strategies, networking (internal and external), goal setting and developing a draft personal action plan for career development.

Step4: Career Options & Planning - Enables finalisation of the action plan, reviewing strengths and weaknesses and determining any possible obstacles or personal issues that may hold the participant back from achieving their career goals. This step also addresses the critical activity of career discussions with the manager.

hrtech

 
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