An interactive career development guide.
At first glance, this workbook by Segal (Master the Interview, 2016) seems to be best suited to those who are just beginning their careers, but even someone in midcareer would benefit from answering the worthwhile questions in this book. Its four parts logically lead readers through the process of establishing priorities, identifying strengths (and differentiating between “skills” and “talents”), understanding the needs of the marketplace, developing a strategy for finding the right position, and “communicating your value.” In the first part, Segal describes the powerful concept of the “personal value proposition”—basically, a packaging of one’s priorities and strengths for use in a job search—and then uses it as the core concept of the rest of the book. Structurally, each of the 10 chapters is a “unit” on a specific topic, such as “Self-Reflection” or “Your Personal Brand.” The text does a fine job of explaining each subject, but its real strength is its focus on personalized interactivity. Almost every unit contains provocative self-assessment questions and worksheets while also offering appropriate guidance. For example, Unit 8, “Creating Your Own Market,” discusses entrepreneurship, changing fields, and “recovering from career inertia.” The open-ended directional statements include such thought-starters as “How I can keep my ‘ear to the ground’ regarding professional and personal interests that might lead to a new market” and “What I can do that could be a bridge to my dream job and/or create alternatives for me.” Segal’s positive coaching will encourage readers to forge onward even when they find some of the sections to be challenging to complete.
A highly useful manual that will be valuable to career coaches and motivated readers who are willing to do the work.