Parents – Write Things Down when you have invested in a Career Guidance Professional (CGP) to help your son or daughter in their career / academic / study plan challenges. So many parents trust the CGP (which they should) to give their child all the attention and care they need to help them make the right decisions, and never check in with them until the decisions are made at the end of the process (assessments, tests, questionnaires, discussions, decisions etc. are completed…). It is in your interest, as much as your child interests, that you know what is going on, what you have invested in and that you get summary feedback on what has been carried out at each session, what is needed to be done before the next session and what is planned to occur at the next session.

As you choose the CGP, ask them for a proposal regarding their approach, how long the intervention takes and the costs involved. The latter can be a deal-maker of course. But, you have to make the decision on what this is worth to you, what you will get out of it presently and in the future. The costs and time involved in your child choosing the wrong Career, choosing the wrong Third Level Course, choosing the wrong Leaving Certificate Subjects far outweigh the cost in investing in a CGP (if they are good of course and come with a track record, recommendations and testimonials).

As you and your child begin the process of working with the CGP, you need to request the following. More so from your child than the CGP. The CGP can also provide this information, but it is better that you get it from your child under the direction of the CGP…

  1. Summary of what occurred / was agreed at the session
  2. What has been given to your child in the form of exercises / activity for the next session?
  3. What is planned for the next session?

You should demand from the CGP that the above is completed and written down by the child, under the CGP’s direction and given to you in a format that is organised, professional and clear…all leading to making good career, academic and study plans for your child.

Once you have this information, it can benefit you in many ways:

  • You know exactly what is been carried out with your child during and between each session
  • You can review this information with your child immediately before and immediately after each session
  • You can look back at what was done in the days, weeks, months, year ahead should you witness that your child has not been following what they set out and agreed to do during their time with the CGP
  • You can involve the CGP again, if need be, if you feel that your son / daughter is not performing in the way that you expected
  •  Finally, by having this involvement and information in your child’s future career, education and study, you feel more confident and in control knowing that they are getting the best attention, and you are getting a return on your investment…an investment that is difficult to monetize (i.e. what is it worth to you?).

When it does deliver and your child meets all there and your expectations, the monetary investment is insignificant…





When it comes to choosing careers for our children, we as parents / guardians struggle and worry on how we should help them make the right decisions. Do we intervene and guide them or even tell them what career they should pursue; do we leave it to themselves to decide; do we put our trust in the school’s Career Guidance Teacher/s or do we seek the help of a private Career Guidance Professional? So many questions, so many answers, but at the end of the day it is our child who is preparing to go out into a world that can be merciless, can be impatient and that takes no prisoners; and we need to be involved. Read more

10 things that students should be thankful for, I hear people say with astonishment, especially young people! There are many things students should be thankful for and I’m going to outline them here with a focus on career and academia. One might say that it would be easier to outline things that students are ‘unthankful’ for or are not happy with, but when one thinks about it, students in Ireland today have a lot going for them; with more and more positives and opportunities coming around the corner. Read more