ERIC Number: ED402502
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
What Works and What Doesn't in Career Development Programs.
Career development has become important in organizations struggling with restructuring and its effects on employees. Employees now understand the process as a way to gain employability skills in order to obtain different jobs within their companies or elsewhere. Career development often takes place in workshops, although many people prefer a more private setting, at least initially. Self-assessment tools can be used, but they should avoid any association with tests. A range of career-learning material should be offered, such as self-help libraries and software systems such as DISCOVER, Career Builder, or System of Interactive Guidance and Information (SIGI) PLUS. The best workshop design seems to be 2 consecutive days followed up with a day 5-8 weeks later. An external career trainer should lead the workshops, rather than an internal trainer. Managers should undertake the process first so that they can learn to be career coaches for their employees. Employees should be encouraged to develop their self-knowledge and then to develop knowledge of other jobs they might like. Although employers fear that most employees will ask for promotions, most employees actually want more variety and more opportunity to learn in their jobs. Mentoring support can be helpful, and bottom-up succession planning is more useful than the older top-down method. Some reasons for the failure of career development programs are as follows: they focus on the needs of only a portion of the employee population with an organization; they rely on inadequate methods of self-assessment measurement; they avoid a systems approach; they depend on workshops as the only learning media; upper management has not been part of the process before implementation; and performance appraisal discussions have been mixed with career review discussions. Today's organization is not the authoritarian vertical hierarchical type; employees need career development programs to react to changing needs of the organization and the marketplace. (KC)
Descriptors: Adults, Career Change, Career Choice, Career Development, Career Guidance, Career Planning, Employer Employee Relationship, Employment Practices, Foreign Countries, Occupational Information, Organizational Development, Program Implementation, Resources, Self Actualization, Self Evaluation (Individuals), Staff Development, Workshops
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Centre for Worklife Counselling, Sydney (Australia).