Career Counselling Australia

Personal and Career Counselling- Locals Helping Locals

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Blu Ripples - Personal and Career Counselling Services; helping locals through COVID-19 pandemic

Personal and Career Counselling Services

In response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic and the impact it has had on individuals, families and businesses Blu Ripples Counselling Services has developed and implemented 3 offers to help you or a loved one address personal wellbeing, career and employment support.

Simply choose one of the following four offers and contact Blu Ripples to discuss your individual situation and make an appointment (either Telephone or Skype) to speak with me from the comfort and safety of your home.

Blu Ripples Personal and Career Counselling Services - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) promotion; valid to 28th April 2020
Blu Ripples Resume Writing Services - New Client Offer - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) promotion; valid to 28th April 2020
Blu Ripples Resume Writing Services for Existing Clients; COVID-19 Promotion

For more information please contact me on 1300 300 557 or (02) 4982 9781 or shoot me an e-mail via info@bluripples.com.au

Just as we are helping you during this difficult time, we also appreciate your support and business – thank you for selecting Blu Ripples to help you through life’s ripples.

P.S.  Please note these offers do not include Defence Career Counselling (PEAP Program) participants, Psychometric Profiling Services, Career Reports or Plans; Terms and Conditions apply; Only one offer maybe used per individual (Offer 1, 2 or 3) or family (in the Offer 2. Option 2) Offers valid from 28th March 2020 to 28th April 2020 and maybe extended at the completion of this period if Blu Ripples deems there is significant interest or demand –  however this is at the sole discretion of Blu Ripples.


BLU RIPPLES CAREER COUNSELLING & CONSULTING SERVICES – WE ARE OPEN AND OPERATING DURING THE PANDEMIC

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Blu Ripples Career Counselling and Consulting Services - We are Open during the Carona Virus Pandemic

Blu Ripples Career Counselling & Consulting Services (including Resume Writing Services) is open and running as normal through the Corona Virus pandemic and offering you or your loved one Career Services through the comfort and safety of your home via telephone or Skype consultation.

So if you are considering your career options or maybe you have been made redundant and are seeking help to:-

Write or update your Resume or employment documentation
Explore your career options and pathways
Undertake some career or academic planning
Research the job market now and into the future; or
Provide outplacement services to your employees

Give me a call today and have a chat, there is no judgement here – just listening and support – I have been through redundancy myself and have helped thousands of individuals over the years through career transition be it voluntary or forced (through redundancy or employment separation).

All I can say, is reach out and make the most of this time, analyse where you are now where you want to be in the future, develop a plan, take action steps so that you are ready to capture opportunities as they prepare themselves.

Remember the labour market maybe tighter now with so many individuals out of work but it does not mean that there are no opportunities out there you just need to be resourceful and possibly look at different options until the pandemic is over.

Finally, I believe it to be beneficial to mention that as a nationally registered Counsellor (with the Australian Counselling Association), I am also in a position to provide Personal Counselling Services to clients who maybe struggling with fears, worries or general anxiety as a result of the changes that are occurring as a result of the pandemic – so if you are struggling and want to talk – I am here

For those in the Defence Force – I am able to provided Career Counselling and Employment Assistance Services to Defence Spouses and Partners through the PEAP Program so make use of this program through your self-isolation or lock-down time and be ready to jump when opportunities present themselves.

You can contact me on 1300 300 557 or via e-mail at info@bluripples.com.au

Stay safe everyone and if you do get the virus please self-isolate.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type.

Described as an down to earth, knowledgable, empathetic and empowering professional, Katherine has helped spouses and partners of Defence personnel with a range of Career Counselling and Employment Assistance services; prior to assisting the Defence in this way Katherine has previously assisted departing Defence personnel and contractors prepare employment documentation since 2003.


Career Counselling – CoronaVirus – Impact on Careers – How to Manage and Grow Your Career During the Pandemic

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Career Counselling During Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic

I had a client yesterday tell me that their boss sent them to Melbourne for a work trip and when they got back even though they had not been around people with the coronavirus and displayed no signs and symptoms that the boss insisted (mandated) that they go into lock down for two weeks and work from home; a difficult task when you are in the real estate business.

In outside world, I am hearing on the news that industries such as musicians, airlines, conference centres etc are all been restricted in some way due to conditions placed on public events and not gathering in groups of 500 or more; the economic impact is that this potentially will have a devastating impact on our economy and take some time to recover.

On the positive side, the crazy panic buying that everyone is engaged in at the moment is seeing Coles employ another 5000 casual employees nationwide to cope with the demands; so whilst some industries are clearly struggling others are growing in terms of labour requirements at the moment so much so that they are not coping with the demands just look at what is happening in Woolworths, doctors surgeries etc the lines are so long and supplies are in short supply (both material and labour).


So what we have here from a very clinical point of view is the Labour Market expanding and contracting, shifting and changing, to adapt to a new (hopefully temporary) world where it is said that the vast majority of the world’s population will contract the virus on some scale over the coming months from what I read an estimated 80%.

Thus, the question is not will I get the virus but when I get the virus what will I do.

At the moment the self-isolation period is for 2 weeks in which time you are not to leave your house and potentially infect others, so if you are sick please adhere to this, but in the meantime from a career point of few what can you do to manage your career.

CAREER PLANNING STRATEGIES TO EXECUTE OVER SELF ISOLATION PERIOD

First and foremost if you are employed on a full time, part time or casual basis explore options where you can minimise going into work for example what remote working strategies are available to you? Have a sensible and realistic conversation with your employer about working from home, the guidelines, expectations and boundaries around this.

When you are required to self-isolate use this time review your career – for example

  • Ask yourself – Are you hitting your career goals? If no – why not?
  • Pinpoint your happiness and satisfaction scale – Are you happy in your present job – if yes great – what can you do to take the next action step in your career or if no what are you unhappy about – are you feeling frustrated, lost confused etc?
  • Has it been a little while since you update your Resume or CV, LinkedIn, Seek profile now is the time to do this either yourself or through someone like me that offers telephone and online consultations (as well normally face to face consults –as long as you are not infected or come into contact with others who potentially or who have recently travelled overseas)
  • If you are not sure about what it is that you want to do in your career, or maybe you have been in a career for a while and want to try something new – now is the time to explore either through Career Planning Services with someone like me or explore career options and labour market statistics online and find out what is available
  • As I tell many clients, think about what your values, motives, needs and wants are in terms of employment opportunities and environments and create your own Selection Criteria so when you are reviewing job advertisements on line and wondering is this for me you have something to refer back to – a tick box of sorts, to help you define if this is the right opportunity to pursue or not at this present point in time – will it help you achieve your long term career objectives.
  • Develop an Academic Planning Strategy – identify where you are in your career and what qualifications or continual professional development courses you need to undertake in order to reach that next opportunity and confidently apply for it.
  • Review TAFE and University programs offered on line and on campus, what are the educational requirements you need to undertake a course i.e. ATAR’s, recognised prior learnings, are these courses accredited by industry bodies, will the course help you gain industry recognition upon completion.
  • If you are a partner of a Defence personnel and have recently moved to a new location check out the PEAP program and see what services you can access, telephone someone like me and ask for a quote, put that quote in and get the ball rolling in terms of the approval process and moving forward with Career Counselling and Employment Assistance Services

In short whilst the Corona Virus will have an impact on the labour market and the economy in general it does not have to be all doom and gloom every – focus on the positive what you can achieve during this down time, make use of it – create a career plan – grow, develop and evolve as an individual and professional during this time and then when things start to recover you will be in a better position to capture new and exciting opportunities as you have capitalised on the down time rather than squandering it.

Make a solid choice to use this time wisely to plan your career and make your future goals a reality by doing your research now.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW. Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.

Authors Notation: As a result of writing and publishing this article one was invited by ABC Radio (Hobart) to participate in an interview on Career Change with the renowned Louise Saunders on 18th May 2020 at 7.10pm; to listen to the program segement click here and fast forward to 7 min 30 into the commencement of the program.


CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR REGIONAL AND RURAL COMMUNITY MEMBERS

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Career Planning and Development Regional and Rural Community Members

Do you live in a regional or rural area in Australia and feel stuck in your career? That there is limited or no employment opportunities? Discover how to identify and capture employment opportunities in your area.

CAREER PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Career Guidance and Advice, for Regional and Rural Community Members

As a Career Development Specialist and Counsellor whom lives and works in Port Stephens, a regional area on the NSW North Coast, one has facilitated numerous regional and rural clients since 2012 to identify and explore career options and pathways and as such understands the challenges and opportunities that come from living in areas outside of major CBD locations.

Whilst it is true that the volume of opportunities is not the same as a major CBD location such as Sydney; it does not mean that opportunities do not exist.  It simply means that regional and rural community members need to dig a little deeper, explore labour market statistics in more detail, identify and respond to opportunities and possibly make a few more compromises in relation to their desired outcome(s) for example embracing portfolio careers (having several part time or casual positions) rather than traditional full time 9 to 5 positions.

Career Planning and Development – Where to Start?

Like their major city counterparts regional and rural community members need to: –

  • Establish baselines
  • Expand and challenge their mindset
  • Think outside the square
  • Determine their career interests, employment needs and wants
  • Determine the needs, current and future employment opportunities of the local and/or surrounding communities
  • Ask themselves a variety of career and employment related questions such as: –
  • Are my career and/or academic objectives realistic?
  • Will my actual or intended academic pathway provide a return on investment?
  • Do I really want to work in this position – industry? Why?
  • Am I willing to relocate (intrastate, interstate or overseas) to achieve my career goal?
  • What are my alternative career options and pathways?
  • What are the top employment industries and employers in my area?
  • Am I willing to work for myself or would I prefer to be employed by someone?
  • Do I have the skills, knowledge, qualifications and experiences to start my own business or work as an independent contractor?
  • What are the niche employment markets in my area and how can I capitalise on these? That is ask yourself – what products, services, industries are over or under represented in your area and how can you market yourself to capture appropriate opportunities
  • Is it best to market myself as a generalist or a specialist my chosen field?

Where are the employment – job opportunities?

Just like each individual, each regional and rural area across Australia has its strengths, areas of growth and opportunities for community members.

In the 7+ years one has lived in Port Stephens NSW with ones’ husband; over this timeframe we have noticed a lot of change and growth in our suburb and surrounding area; in fact, we have seen the area progress with: –

  • New Shopping Centre Complexes
  • New residential and commercial building lot releases; subsequent construction of establishments
  • Expansion of the nearby RAAF base
  • Procurement of land for aged care and educational facilities
  • Commencement of construction of a local sporting complex
  • A Customs facility been built and utilised at Newcastle Airport and over the Christmas period (18/19) saw the trial of direct flights to New Zealand from Newcastle NSW – the facilities are there now – so what does this mean for the longer term? Is this a possible new international airport base in NSW ( even if it only services Pacific and Asia)– if so just imagine the jobs this will create for the area not only in Tourism and Transport but in other supporting and/or complementary industries

All of this within a 10 or so minute drive of our home; thus, when reading the above information – what does this tell you about this particular region?

From ones’ perspective, when analysing these changes in terms of employment industries the obvious industry that is booming in the area at the moment is Construction; which just so happens to be a top 3 industry across Australia and within Port Stephens (based on latest labour market statistic information).

Occupations that fall within the construction industry include Electrician, Painter, Tiler, Project Manager, Construction – Site Manager, Labourer, Excavator Operator, Fencer, Surveyor, Plumber, Building Estimator, Building Inspector, Pest Inspector, Carpenter and Joiner.

However, just like any other industry there is a myriad of occupations and industries that complement and/or support the Construction industry both during the planning and construction phase and post construction (in terms of providing products and services to residents and the border community) for example: –

  • Administration, Secretarial and Bookkeeping Services
  • Architects and Landscape Architects
  • Engineers and Draftspersons
  • Medical and Allied Health Professionals e.g. Doctors, Psychologists, Counsellors, Social Workers, Mental Health Professionals, Rehabilitation Therapists
  • Retails Managers and Shop Assistants
  • Personal Services e.g. Handyman and Cleaners
  • Tourism e.g. Accommodation for workers whom live out-side the region
  • Business Services – Human Resource Managers, Accountants, Marketing Professional, Information Technology professionals, safety specialists
  • Education – Teachers, Childcare Workers, Librarians, Career Guidance Advisors, Teachers’ Aides, Lollypop (Traffic Control) professionals.

Sometimes we become so stuck in our particular mindset of I want to be this, I want to earn so much per week, I don’t want to work in that location and/or even that we are above a particular position or industry that we fail to see the opportunities right in front of us.

As one highlighted through the above summary, opportunities do exist in regional and rural areas; it may be that we just need to take a step back and clearly look at our marketplace (what is happening in our region) in greater detail – to do a little more digging (research) and analysis to find out what the opportunities are in order to ascertain where you fit – be it marketing yourself and your unique skill base as an employee or independent worker to capture the market or better yet the niche in the market.

Digging a Little Deeper

As previously discussed, opportunities do exist in rural and regional areas however a little more digging maybe required to find out where you fit in the grand scheme of things.

One way to start, digging a little deeper, is to research your regions labour – employment market statistics; there is a wealth of free and paid information on the internet.

In fact, in researching data for this article, one found (online) a letter dated 10th March 2017 from Port Stephens Council to Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee – Parliament House Canberra; supporting the relocation of government bodies to regional areas.

In the aforementioned correspondence the author (Mr. Wayne Wallis) stated that “the Hunter Region has been experiencing economic restructuring with a shift away from traditional goods-producing sectors like mining and manufacturing to high value added knowledge based service sectors”.

Ones’ interpretation of this commentary is that councils in the Hunter region are strategizing and actioning change management plans to shift the employment market, of their respective areas, to a high quality knowledge base sectors such as Information Technology, Accounting, Counselling, Business Management, Medical and Allied Health, Education and Training and moving away from sectors such as Manufacturing, Mining, Electricity and Gas.

Thus, whilst the current labour market in this region maybe goods-producing at present; those considering their career options and pathways would be wise to take this commentary on board and plan for the future rather making decisions based on todays’ (current) needs.

Remember it takes time to study and gain experience and when you have completed any training it is important that the jobs are available in your region, a region close by or that you can develop online services to target the wider community in order to support yourself in your preferred residential location – community.

In closing, as one has clearly articulated throughout this article; each regional and rural area in Australia is different.  However, if you are prepared to do some research and analysis, observe the current services and industries in your area, identify the shortfalls and develop a service or product to meet these needs as an independent worker; or conversely if you can tailor your training and employment documentation (Resume-CV) to the needs of employers through the clear representation of your key transferable skills, knowledge and experiences you will be in front of the competition.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Katherine is the Founder of Blu Ripples a specialist Career Counselling and Consulting practice located in Port Stephens NSW.  Katherine is a nationally registered Career Development Specialist and Counsellor; is a Professional Member of the Career Development Association of Australia, Member of the Australian Counselling Association of Australia and Australian Association for Psychological Type. Katherine has worked in private practice since 2003 and prior to that worked in the corporate sector for a period of 12 years predominantly in Human Resources and Administration.