Developing career resilience
Developing career resilience

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Developing career resilience

3 The four Cs of career adaptability

A final aspect to consider, alongside resilience, is career adaptability. According to the Warwick Institute for Employment Research, career adaptability refers to the ‘capability of an individual to make a series of successful transitions where the labour market, organisation of work and underlying occupational and organisational knowledge bases may all be subject to considerable change’ (Brown et al., 2012, p. 755).

Activity 8 Assessing career adaptability

Timing: Allow about 15 minutes

First, think of someone you know who has made a series of successful career transitions. Which attitudes, skills or attributes would you say made a difference for them?

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Now, have a go at this career adaptability questionnaire yourself. It is developed around the four Cs model of career adaptability (discussed below).

Different people use different strengths to build their careers. No one is good at everything, and each of us emphasises some strengths more than others. Please rate how strongly you have developed each of the following availabilities using the table below, where 1 is ‘Not strong’, and 5 is ‘Strongest’.

StrengthsScore (1 to 5)
Concern
1. Thinking about what my future will be like
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2. Realising the implications of today’s choices for my future
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3. Preparing for the future
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4. Becoming aware of the education and career choices of others
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5. Planning how to achieve my goals
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6. Actively engaging with my career
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Control
7. Remaining positive
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8. Making decisions by myself
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9. Taking responsibility for my actions
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10. Acting in line with my values and principles
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11. Relying on myself
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12. Doing what’s right for me
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Curiosity
13. Exploring my opportunities
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14. Looking for opportunities to grow as a person
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15. Investigating options before making a choice
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16. Observing different ways of doing things
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17. Probing deeply into questions that I have
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18. Becoming curious abut new opportunities
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Confidence
19. Performing tasks efficiently
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20. Taking care to do things well
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21. Learning new skills
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22. Working to my full potential
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23. Overcoming obstacles
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24. Solving problems
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Words: 0
(adapted from Wright and Frigerio, 2015)
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Comment

As your answer to this question will be personal/only applicable to your own circumstances, there is no discussion for this activity.

In this model, as you may have noticed, the questions come in four areas – the four Cs of career adaptability. These four dimensions, devised by academics Toni Wright and Gill Frigerio at Canterbury Christ Church and Warwick Universities, are:

  • Concern: the key question here is ‘Do I have a future?’. Individuals with high concern are confident, looking ahead, scanning their environment for the need to change and taking a planned, future-oriented approach to their career.
  • Control: this looks at ‘Who owns my future?’ and how far your decision-making is influenced by others. High control is demonstrated by an organised, deliberate approach to working life.
  • Curiosity: this addresses ‘What will I do?’. It involves exploration of options, through experiences or daydreams, the seeking of information and clarification of values to allow a sense of calling to develop.
  • Confidence: this refers, finally, to the question ‘Can I do it?’ and looks at self-esteem, self-efficacy and courage.
(adapted from Wright and Frigerio, 2015, p. 9)

Activity 9 Assessing your own career adaptability

Timing: Allow about 20 minutes

Now take ten minutes to look back through your responses to the questionnaire, and the key questions of the four Cs.

In which adaptability dimensions does it suggest you are currently stronger, and where would you welcome a boost? Do bear in mind that, if you are already going through major change, you may feel you’ve reached your limit for adaptability for now! As with much of this course, these indicate pointers for potential development, not hard and fast actions.

Note down your thoughts. You might like to consider again the various videos and case studies through the course. From the veteran to the entrepreneurs, athletes and employers, which of the tactics they suggest might help with your chosen area for development?

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Comment

As your answer to this question will be personal/only applicable to your own circumstances, there is no discussion for this activity.

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