A lost and confused history major, I studied history for the joy of it. (And I ran headlong into organic chem.)
Obviously, history companies didn't come to campus recruiting. The three careers I could think of (teaching high school, law, or museum work) were off the table for me.
So, I interviewed with anyone willing to talk with me. Everyone encouraged me to take any offers I got, even though they all felt wrong.
Just before taking this well-meaning advice, I met a career coach who "got me."
She challenged me to think, really think, about my values.
About what I wanted my work to mean. About the culture and people in the organization I joined. And she gave me space and encouragement to imagine work that fit me.
Since then, I've used what she taught me, following that same general direction, shifting, and making course corrections to accommodate my professional and personal evolution.
I realize how incredibly fortunate I was to learn from her that it's ok to look for work that does what I need it to – for me.
I've come to understand career discernment as "thinking like a cubist." We can continuously reconfigure our unique facets to redefine purposeful work over a lifetime.
The thing about being a liberal arts grad is that, for better or worse, we see connections between almost everything. We were thinking outside the box before others realized there was a box!
It's an exciting way to be, but it proves challenging when it's time to make confident decisions about work early in, and even midway, through our lives. It should be easy, that answers should come quickly, but they often don't.
Fortunately, as the world of work evolved from ladders to paths, we can now go off-roading to discover opportunities that combine the wide range of skills, interests, and values we bring to the table, and want to include.
I'll support you on this adventure and coach you through obstacles, including flagging motivation, fear, and debilitating procrastination. You'll discover what matters most, how to get it and recognize your whole self in the outcome.
You'll know that I genuinely believe in your ability to identify and secure work that is satisfying, purposeful, and comes with a paycheck.
"Our discussion...did as much to motivate me and inspire self-confidence as our discussion about my job search. Since our discussion, I have found it very easy to focus on exactly what I want to look for and put this into words. I am also now confident enough to look for the kinds of jobs I know I want and are deserving of my skills."
--former client, now in leadership role at AAAS, Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion
"I want to thank you…for your help with my job-search. Your clear-headed advice gave direction and a measure of sanity to an often-panicked process."
--former client, now freelance translator in Germany
"I appreciated your analysis, opinions, and advice regarding my current state of career flux. I just wanted to thank you for helping me out…I don’t know how many other people would have understood how I was feeling. I hope I will one day learn to listen like you do."
--former client, now owner of Communications Group in MN
"Perhaps most fundamentally, Anne helped me to see the career exploration process as a deeply social phenomenon: one obtains the most useful information by talking with people involved with a career, and one is ultimately hired not so much because of a sparkling resume but rather because of personal contacts, good communication skills and healthy first impressions."
--former client, now SVP at Wells Fargo
"When one first meets (Anne), one is aware of her intenseness, her concentration on listening. I sense that she has a strong code of ethics which she attempts to live up to."
--former colleague at Bates College