8 Career Tips Your Career Counselor Hasn’t Told You

*** This is a guest blog post from Amy Klimek, HR recruiter and VP of Human Resources for ZipRecruiter ***

These days, more and more people are interested in optimizing their career paths so they can attain both personal happiness and professional success. In many cases, these individuals rely on career counselors for professional advice and resources that will help build a strong vocational future. Yet while consulting with a career counselor can be advantageous in many ways, it's important to note that there are a plethora of great career tips you might not be receiving from him or her. With that thought in mind, consider the following career ideas and advice your career counselor probably hasn't given you:

1. Follow Your Heart.

Oftentimes, career counselors are focused on helping individuals find jobs that are going to pay a substantive amount of income. While this is prudent, it's also important to note that job performance is oftentimes lackluster when an individual is not emotionally invested in the work they perform. For this IEven if "following your heart" leads you into work that is not as immediately profitable as other more well-paying positions, you are much more likely to maintain the personal sense of well-being and productivity that help facilitate promotions, bonuses, and raises. If you are considering a job in corrections, you have probably already decided you are interested in helping others whether in probation or parole or in a facility setting.

You know that a second chance is important and maybe you want to work to help others regain their place in society after being in prison. You most likely also know that public safety is enhanced by those working in corrections.

2. Recruitment Agencies Can Be Effective.

Oftentimes, career counselors work for career centers that feature great services such as resume reviews, mock interviews, and listings of local job openings. While all of these resources are great, it's important to note that there are other organizations you can utilize if you don't have immediate success in locating a position. Specifically, you can consult with a recruitment agency. These agencies are oftentimes highly effective in helping you land a job for several reasons. One of those reasons is that recruitment agencies oftentimes receive information regarding job openings prior to the general public and then share the new open position with the individuals using their services.

3. You Are Your Best Advocate.

It's not uncommon to see a career counselor informing an individual that networking and recommendations are an incredibly important and inalienable part of the job hunt process. While these assessments are generally accurate, it's also important to note that you are oftentimes your best advocate. For example, if a prospective employer is impressed with the recommendation letters that accompany your resume, she or he may call you in for an interview. During this interview process, it will be your responsibility to "sell yourself" by providing detailed information regarding your aptitude for the position. With this idea in mind, it's important that you take time to critically think about all of your accomplishments, awards, and skills throughout the job hunt and interview process. Being able to recite great information about all of your wonderful skills and talents in an "elevator pitch" type format can help you land the job of your dreams.

4. Enthusiasm Is Important.

Oftentimes, the professional training provided by career counselors results in the (conscious or unconscious) cultivation of a dull, generic personality. This is unfortunate given that many if not most employers are most impressed by job candidates who have very excited, passion-filled personalities. This doesn't mean that you need to be "bouncing off the walls" in the interview. However, reciting your skills and accomplishments in a robotic, monotonous manner does not make you a particularly appealing candidate. With that idea in mind, be sure to demonstrate "personality" and livelihood when interfacing with prospective employers.

Wrapping It All Up

If you're in search of a career-building position that will make you vocationally mobile, it's important to note that consulting with a career counselor can help you realize this objective. However, you should also keep in mind that career counselors don't know everything. And in many cases, they may intentionally withhold information from you in order to ensure that you are using their services. Since this is the case, you should be cognizant of the career tips outlined above. They will likely help you gain the confidence and independence necessary to land your dream job.

Amy Klimek is an experienced HR recruiter and VP of Human Resources for ZipRecruiter, a company that simplifies the hiring process for small to medium size businesses. Prior to that Amy has held similar roles at Rent.com, eBay and US Interactive.

For Amy, corporate culture isn't about dogs and free lunches, it's about empowering employees and creating an enriching environment for people to excel.

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