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How to Start your Child’s Career Planning Early

Let us paint you a picture- Have you often found yourself wondering at a parent-teachers’ meeting about how some parents have so many queries about their own children? Do you not agree that mostly, more than the teachers themselves, it is the parent who knows the strengths and weaknesses of their own child better? If you are nodding along in agreement, then go ahead and give yourself a quick pat on the back. You have officially earned the highest degree in parenting- “You know your child well!”

This very degree takes you to a big decision-making moment: planning the ideal career for your child. Even though it comes down to the child’s decision ultimately, career planning is not something that can simply be left to the child entirely. The process does require adult intervention & supervision. Career planning requires a detailed and in-depth study of the options available, a careful analysis of the current market and upcoming future trends and finally an assessment of your child’s interest levels.

The best way to get this done is to catch them young, or as they say, – Start Planning Early! Wondering how to go about it exactly? Here are a few tips:

1. Identifying their strengths and weaknesses:

Start by actually working on your child’s likes, dislikes, their values and their physical and mental makeup. What may turn out to be a good choice for someone else may not necessarily be apt for your child. Only if he/she displays an aptitude for it should you consider thinking about it.

2. Exploring Options:

Research is key. Read up about the job market, the career prospects, the upcoming trends and the projected trends taking into account 7 to 10 years down the line and also about the potential alternatives available. The internet is full of accessible resources for you to go on that researching journey.

3. Shortlisting a Few Options:

While you are on the researching journey, you will end up exploring hundreds of career options, you’ll begin to find some that work and some that don’t. As you do this, you’ll begin to move closer to finding the perfect-fit for your child. Keeping all eggs together may not be harmful in this context.

4. Helping Them Test The Waters:

Volunteering at various organisations and events, visiting career fairs, taking up internships, attending community events- all these things will help your child find out more about what a particular profession is actually like. This hands-on experience will help a great deal in making crucial decisions.

The best part about starting early is that you as a parent can help establish a firm foundation for your child, and give them enough time to explore, experiment and discover things about themselves that will ultimately help them in their career journey. Remember that success is made when the rest of the world is fast asleep!

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