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  • The end of the conveyor belt: Part II

    So: you have reached the end of the educational conveyor belt, and you are now in the big heap of other new graduates who also do not yet have a job. It would be tempting, shallow and less than kind to write a post telling you how you shouldn’t let your situation stress you.

  • The end of the conveyor belt: Part I

    So: you made it through pre-school, primary school, secondary school, high school, college, university (or insert you local educational nomenclature here), and now the day of reckoning has arrived. You have reached the end of the educational conveyor belt, you weren’t one of the lucky ones to secure a place on a Graduate Scheme, and now you are wondering how on earth you are going to cope without a job prospect in sight. Your stress levels are building…

  • Positive Framing

    Had a great moment in a hoozyu workshop in London a couple of weeks ago – we had just started going through the Areas of Interest data (what matters most to you and energizes you). This particular participant had a high 90s score for Artistic, meaning that “visual impact” and “how things look” was going to be really very important to her.

  • Perfect timing

    I have awkward news for you: the point at which most of us launch out on our career (and prior to that, select our courses which held set that direction) is the point at which we are most aware of what others expect of us; and probably least aware of what matters most to us.

  • Motivation matters, whatever the job

    There is sometimes a (quite illogical) assumption that staying highly motivated matters only if you are in a professional high-flyer career.

  • Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow... Red, Green and Blue Bars

    As I mentioned in a previous post, the Birkman Method® Data at the heart of your hoozyu™ package underwent a major upgrade at the beginning of this year. If you took the Questionnaire before January 9th, 2012, you won’t have seen your Areas of Interest or Grid change, but you might see big changes in Org Focus and Career Families.

  • True Grit: getting a tighter grip on your Career Options

    While I would still say what we said in the hoozyu Workbook – namely, that your Areas of Interest scores are the most important data you have when it comes to making long-term career decisions – the Job Families (fourth and final) section of the hoozyu Birkman report just got a lot more powerful.

  • Major upgrade coming down the line

    From some time in mid January, there will be a major upgrade to the Job Families/Titles and Org Focus sections of the Birkman Report included in your hoozyu package.

  • Fitting in...

    Just been reading an article which considered two “fit” factors for prospective employees: how well do you fit the organization AND how well do you fit your supervisor. The article suggested that these two factors are rarely considered together, but that there was good reason to do so. Did provoke some thoughts…

  • Reading the Sediment

    Funnily enough, when I first started working with the Birkman Method (which is the tool at the heart of hoozyu), I used to skate rather fast over the Areas of Interest; I think I found them a bit too simple or “fluffy” in the corporate context I was addressing. Now I find them an endless source of fascination and enlightenment, at all levels. Today, let’s forget reading them as specific scores and instead half-close our eyes and focus on what the strata tell us. That’s right, let’s pretend your Areas of Interest are a nicely presented outcrop of sedimentary rock*; what are the layers telling us?

  • Circus, part 2

    Another exercise going on (trainees all giving their first proper Birkman feedback), so here is a more complete but by no means exhaustive list of the obvious and less obvious implications of Birkman Areas of Interest scores in your hoozyu package:

  • Don't run away to join the circus (unless you really want to)

    I am running Birkman Certification this week (class are just doing an exercise, so this will be quick!), but there was an interesting discussion yesterday around Motivation (the Areas of Interest part of your Birkman Report).

  • Vive la différence!

    When you are in your late teens and early twenties, OF COURSE the number one thing on your mind is what courses you should take and what career path you should pursue. (As an aging parent, I am hoping you are even considering how you will support any aging parents you have in their declining years). It is, however, just possible that from time to time you might be thinking something along the lines of, well, “how will I know when I have found ‘the One for Me’”. And no, we stopped talking about careers at the end of the first sentence; this is about finding a life partner, not an occupation.

  • Something different on (under?) the curriculum

    Something I hear all the time, whether I am talking to teachers, youth group leaders or anyone else involved in working with young people, and whatever country I am in, is this: “Oh yes, young people here go through several psychometric tests before they leave (school / college / poly), but it doesn’t seem to have much impact on them; if you ask them about it, they don’t seem to know what they learnt or even what tool it was they went through. Actually I’m not sure either. I think they might have done (DISC / MBTI / StrengthsFinder / etc)…”

  • Work with what you have

    Duke Ellington, the jazz musician and composer, once said that he found it much easier to write an interesting and inventive tune for a musician who only had three good notes, than for someone who could hit every note in all three octaves with virtuosity. For the same reason, artists will draw with their wrong hand or with a blindfold on; they do this in order to limit their possibilities and force themselves to make the most of what little is now available to them.

  • Get to know the stranger in the mirror

    And I still haven’t found

    What I’m looking for

    (U2)

  • Don’t navigate by your exam grades

    Who needs career advice when they have their exam grades to go by? And – let’s face it – most careers advice gets as far as this:

  • Motivation makes the world go round

    I was running a workshop for CEOs here in Singapore a year ago, and someone who had just revealed that he had a very high score on the Birkman “Area of Interest” called “Outdoor” was explaining why this hadn’t surprised him at all. “I have just extended my National Service obligation,” he announced, to the astonishment of most of the other men in the room. (Who extends their NS obligation???) Being highly motivated by… well, by being outdoors, having to spend a few weeks a year being an officer on jungle manoeuvres was something to look forward in his otherwise corporate life-style.

  • hoozyu on Facebook

    hoozyu is a project that was first launched in August 2009. Exactly 2 years later, we are about to launch hoozyu as a Facebook app. This blog is for users, mentors and facilitators – anyone who wants to make best use of the hoozyu package.