Did you know that 54% of Americans are loyal to their jobs?

If you’re unsure which path you want your career to take or are ready for a change, i.e. switching jobs or starting a new career, you came to the right place. Read on to learn how to find a career coach.

What Do Career Counselors Do?

As the name suggests, career counselors help people in various stages of their careers by providing guidance and helping them get to the right place.

Career counselors will typically look at your skills, interests, personality, and education to help you on the right path. Because career counselors also have a lot of connections, they can also assist with professional networking, finding highest paying jobs, upskilling yourself, and growing your career in the right direction.

When Do You Need a Career Counselor?

 There are many reasons why people choose to work with a career counselor, and it’s not limited to people finishing their advanced degrees. Many people seek careers that are full-filling, challenging, provide room for growth, and can also provide work-life balance.

It would help if you considered working with a career coach in these situations.

1- Last Year of College or Advanced Degree

If you’re in the last year of education, you should consider the help of a career counselor to get you to the right place. Many colleges and universities even offer these services for their students.

As a student, you might need help navigating the current work market or have the skills necessary to get the job of your dreams.

2- Your Career Goals Have Changed

It isn’t uncommon for people’s life goals to change as they enter the job market or reach certain milestones in their life. For example, you have started a family, and you need a job that offers a higher salary or more benefits.

Career coaching can help guide you through this transition.

3- You Feel Stuck In Your Position

Some people take on roles at work only to discover there aren’t many opportunities to move forward and grow.

If there isn’t room for growth in your current path, a career counselor can help you navigate different options and create a career plan.

How to Choose a Career Counselor

Once you have decided it’s time to switch careers or you’re a recent grad, you’re ready to take the next step. However, before you hire a career counselor, you must have certain criteria.

What Type of Counseling Do You Need?

Hiring a professional to help guide you in your career will take some research on your part. Because no career counseling program is a one-size-fits-all, you need to decide what type of coaching you need. For example, you might need Career coaching for introverts.

Depending on your needs and finances, you might choose to work with a coach that offers one-time session packages or long-term coaching.

Verify Counselor Accreditation and Certification

Before you hire a career counselor, you must verify their credentials. Most on-demand career counselors will have a master’s degree in counseling, but this doesn’t hold for all counselors.

However, if your coach doesn’t have an advanced degree, you can look for other reputable accreditation programs.

The most common accreditation programs are:

  • International Coaching Federation (ICF)
  • National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC)
  • Association of Career Professionals International (ACPI)
  • National Career Development Association

The type of accreditation your coach has will also depend on your need and career path.

Personality Match

Although the experience and accreditation of career coaches are important, you also need to consider their personalities. It won’t benefit you working with the best career coach in the field if your personalities don’t match.

When you meet with potential career counselors, you must access their communication styles and outlook on the job market.

Ask yourself if you want to work with a more direct counselor or someone who can soften the blow. Do you want a career coach who is positive but concise? All of these things are important when matching with a career counselor’s personality.

Field Expertise

Before working with a career counselor, it’s important you know the extent of their experience in a different field. When you’re unsure what path you want to take, they can help you find the right industry based on your interests and skills.

Even if you think you have a strong grasp on your career aspirations, career counselors can help you discover hidden potential. Ask any potential career coaches which fields they’re most familiar with.

Learn About Success Stories

Successful career counselors will want to brag about their success stories and high-profile clients. Before you decide to work with a career coach, you must ask them about their success stories.

Ask them to give you examples of difficult situations and which techniques to help their clients find the right career path.

Ask Them Questions

Before you meet with a career coach for the first time, you must ask them the right questions. The first meeting is the best opportunity to ask any questions you might have about your path, their strategies and confirm they’re a good fit for you.

How many sessions do clients in my situation need? What is your strategy to get me on the right career path? Why did you choose to become a career counselor?

What are your strengths and weaknesses as a career counselor? How will your fee schedule work? These are only a few questions you should prepare when meeting with a career counselor for the first time. Don’t forget to write them down and bring them to the meeting.

Are You Ready to find a Career Coach that Fits Your Needs?

Now that you know what to consider when you want to find a career coach, you’re ready for the next step in your career. Remember, before choosing a counselor, you should learn about their accreditations, experience in the field, personality, and success stories. Though you can find a good coach virtually anywhere in the world, finding one locally can be great.

A local career coach is not only great for in-person meetup but can also connect with you with the right local network!

If you enjoyed this article and would like to learn more, check out the rest of our blog.