Writing a resume isn’t easy. Whether your child is writing their first resume or updating their resume for a career search, it never gets easier. Learning how to write one can encourage your child to explore multiple career options. Here are some tips for helping your children find the right career that’s suitable for them.
You want to be a supportive parent, not a helicopter parent. Think of yourself as someone who’s uplifting your children and supporting them in whatever path they choose. While helping them with their resume give them a boost, they’re the ones who are using this resume to explore new possibilities.
Helicopter parents hover over their children’s career path and goals. Some of them even accompany their children to their job interviews. You don’t want to become that kind of parent. Make sure you’re a supportive parent, not someone who’s watching their every move. Their future is at stake, so it’s up to them to work on their resume.
Don’t Write it For Them
Just like you shouldn’t do their homework for them, you shouldn’t write their resume for them. Writing a resume takes a lot of trial and error. There are 30-something adults who are still learning how to perfect their resumes to this day. Teach your kids how to fill out a job application, resume, cover letter, etc. but don’t offer to do it for them. They have to learn from their own mistakes.
It might be easier to write their resume yourself than to teach them how to do it, but you should resist this though. It’s a growing experience that they need. Give your children advice such as writing a thank-you note shortly after a job interview. They can practice by writing you a thank-you note so they can also perfect this key step to landing a job.
Identify Their Strengths
It’s important for your children to identify their strengths on their resume. This is known as strength spotting and your children can help you with this step. Note the times where your child performed their best, whether it was individually or within a group. All of these skills can be highlighted on their resume.
It’s also recommended that your child take a strength-identifying exercise such as the Myers-Briggs test or the Strong Interest Inventory. If your child is good at collecting their thoughts before they speak, you make suggest that they should become a lawyer. But this skill can apply to a wide variety of careers, so why suggest they should follow a certain career path? Identify strengths that help them find their perfect career.
Use Your Own Network
The Occupational Outlook Handbook by the Bureau of Labor Statistics has over 25 career categories and hundreds of jobs descriptions under each one. It even lists the salaries for each of these careers. While you’re not aware of all of most of these careers, it’s a good idea to refrain from suggesting certain careers. Allow your child to find their dream career so they can carve their own path.
Once your child has found a few careers they’re interested in, you can use your network to help them out. This isn’t considered cheating since you’re teaching them how to network. You can connect them with professionals who can interview them or shadow them. Maybe one of these networking opportunities could end up as an internship or mentorship.
Don’t pressure your kids to follow in your footsteps. If they do want to pursue the same career, they’d rather figure out how to get there on their own. It’s part of growing up and becoming an adult.