India is a country where it is said that students first do graduation and then realise what they wanted to do in their career life. Many of the students at this realisation stage come under the societal pressure and continue living the life of frustration. This situation is felt by many students and only a very few have the courage to come out of this situation and select a career which can fit their aspirations. Need not to say that a career counsellor can be a great buddy at this point of career and he can help a student in understanding his goals and determining the perfect route to achieve them. A career counsellor can be of great help if they can easily understand the emotional turbulence a student is going through rather than taking it just as another case. He can understand only if he has gone through the same situation.
One such career counsellor is Mr Aditya Sisodia. He is recognised for helping the students with career strategies that can help them for a long-term growth both in the personal and professional manner. He has done his graduation in BSc Computer Science and a further study of MBA. Now he is actively pursuing career counselling for students from all spheres for the last 6 years. He is a certified skill development professional, a certified trainer, Certified Instructional Designer (CID), self-development trainer and Certified Psychometric Test Professional (CPTP) and Master Trainer Facilitator. He has also got certification in Psychotherapy which is really helpful to understand the students and drive them to the right path.
Reflection upon his life made him realise his passion of helping others in selecting the right career
Mr Aditya has a rather interesting story. Like many other students of his age, he did his graduation in BSc Computer Science and then did MBA for post-graduation. He was simply following the path that many others have already followed. He easily got campus placement in Bajaj Alliance as a management trainee. This was the time which changed his outlook towards his career. He was selected as a buddy trainer to take care of in-house Training of employees on behalf of Corporate Marketing Channel in Northern Region of INDIA. This made him interact with several candidates and he really likes the work he was doing in assisting others in getting trained. The turn of his life came when he was diagnosed with a health condition and he got time to reflect upon his choices and make a decision of what he actually wanted to do. He realised his passion was helping others in selecting the right career path and he embarked on a journey of being a career counsellor.
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Lack of right career guidance leads to extreme steps taken by the students which are needed to be prevented
He personally finds his job very satisfying since he can see himself helping others in developing them. He says that when a student is at the age of selecting a career, there is no one who can guide him according to his skills, aspirations and goals. Everybody gives the student their own opinion which makes him confused and indecisive. This leads them to mostly fall under peer pressure or follow the dreams of their parents rather than their own. Further, at this stage students are emotionally very weak and they need emotional counselling as well. It has been observed that wrong selection of career leads to backlogs of students which often converts to anxiety attacks and suicides. Such situations are needed to be avoided and students are guided to follow the right path.
He says that when a student comes to him, he first advises the student to take a psychometric test and then he starts his counseling process. Mr. Aditya adds that this is similar to the situation when you go to a doctor. He first asks you to take some tests and then give a diagnosis. With the help of psychometric tests, a student can understand his strengths and weaknesses and along-side get to know his interests and talents. A psychometric test works as a baseline for a candidate. This is followed by competency mapping. This step takes the student to the field where he is required to be led. He is made realized of his current situation and where he needs to be taken. This is a stage of realising reality and expectations and how to achieve the expectations from the real stage. He gives an example by saying that if a student wants to do MBA, he first needs to know what is actually MBA and what are the skills that he requires to develop. Psychometric tests and competency mapping together work wonder for the students.
Parents are the major decision makers of their children career and thus need career counseling too
When asked whether parents should take career counseling along with their wards, he said that it should be done, however, the acceptance rate is very high. The problems arise because of the age gap and generation gap between parents and the children. Current generation wants to enjoy their work, however, parents see the future scope of any field and the salary their child can get from that stream. Most of the times, parents and students feel that they don’t understand each other when it comes to selecting a career. However, if parents don’t support, the whole idea of career counseling is vague since, in India, parents are the decision makers. They are needed to be realized first about the potential of their kids and how they can achieve their dreams. Once parents are satisfied, they can motivate their children in the right direction.
A career counselor should be able to connect the student and understand the strengths and weaknesses
In response to major skills a career counselor should have, Mr. Aditya said that a career counselor should need to first identify the target audience. Generally, 16-22 is the age bracket for the students who need career counseling. There are different stages to which they require counselling– after 12th, after graduation, after post-graduation. The second quality required is that career counselor should remain updated on the new opportunities that are emerging in the country with advancements. It is a general convention in the country that if a student gets low marks, people start considering him weak, a counselor needs to understand at this point that where things went wrong for the student. He could be good in some particular subjects, he could be good in sports or extra-curricular etc. Thirdly, it is required to understand the mindset of a student. Many times, even 50-year-olds come for career counseling. A career counselor needs to understand what their aspirations are and what they seek in life.
Students should also remain updated of the events taking place which create several new opportunities
Mr. Sisodia suggests his students that should also remain updated with all the events taking place and which are opening new opportunities in different fields. He himself remains updated through different seminars, webinars and newsletters. He says that general awareness is non-negotiable. He gives an example by saying that when the government approved of FDI, it was clear that manufacturing sector was going to be greatly impacted and several new jobs were introduced at that time in different companies. If students are prepared beforehand for the situation, they can grab the opportunity else they can easily lose a golden chance. Similarly, these days, PayTM bank is in the talks. This will also open up new opportunities for young enthusiasts and those who are interested in this field may field this as an exciting opportunity. Students should put more efforts into getting ROTI (Return On Time Invested) instead of ROI (Return on investment). They need to understand how they can monetise their time.
Are you still confused about your career?
He further suggests that students should read different career magazines and visit career websites to remain updated. For example, for IT students, he suggests visiting company pages and getting to know about job requirements. For the army, UPSC website should be regularly visited by the candidate. For government job, newspapers are must along with magazines such as Pratiyogita Darpan and job portals. The source of information depends upon the field of interest of the student. Also, in the field of career counseling, he admires everyone but follows no one. He strives to improve himself and learn from other people in this field. In regards to CareerGuide.com, Mr. Aditya says that it is an excellent platform to connect students with the right career counselor. Students can ask questions, know about various colleges and entrance exams etc. Students can use this platform for various purposes and career counselors can also advise students to regularly go through the website to remain updated.