Teenager Career Secrets: Simple Ideas To Discuss Around The Dinner Table – 2

by Donovan Grant on November 8, 2011

Teenager Career Secrets: Simple Ideas To Discuss Around The Dinner Table – 2

 By Donovan Grant

For a teenager, thinking about a future career can be exciting and scary at the same time. The excitement of earning lots of money and becoming independent is a nice vision to have. But career planning can be scary especially when you don’t know what you want to do.

Just when you think it’s hard enough the media is report that unemployment for the 16 – 25 year old age group is at an all time high!

In fact in June earlier this year the figure peaked at just fewer than one million young people unemployed in the UK. “Ouch!” It would be fair for you to ask “what’s the point of my daughter going to college or university to get a degree and then she can’t get a job”. You’d be in your right to say “why can’t more companies take on young people to give them on the job training.” You may even be quietly worried that your child will add to the media’s unemployment count!

You may be getting ahead of me here… the need to focus on your children and their future career is ultra critical right now!

What can a parent do to help?

It isn't easy being the parent of a teenager in today's society. So it’s great to see parents seeking support and using every tool they have to help their teenagers be happy, productive and have a wonderful career.

One of the best tools available to parents is help your son or daughter to examine the talent that he or she has been naturally gifted with.

Now some of you may not have recognised your child’s brilliance yet. Don’t worry, it all starts with you asking yourself “what natural talent does my child have?” Remember this my friends, everyone has a natural gift even you and me too!

It doesn’t matter if your child is in a family with both parents working, single parent family or a family with limited income, every child has a gift. And let’s face it, talent comes in many forms; it can be artistic, practical, technical or academic just to name a few. It could mean a lot in today's world to know what you’re good at.

Here’s the thing-

When you take a real close sneak peak at your child in their teenage years, you can see the seeds of talents that can give them direction and firm footing for the rest of their lives. Now just suppose, that you could help your child to identify, nurture and pursue their chosen specialist area, they could fly like an eagle and stand out in the crowd.

Have you seen something in your teenager and you were wondering “how can I bring it out even more?” You can do it!

You will have heard many stories about people following their passions and living their dreams. In fact for centuries, doing what you loved to do was restricted to the rich and royal classes. It was only after the Industrial Revolution that it could be applied to every person (that means your children and mine.)

What is it like to get the best start in a career for a young person?

Take a seat for a moment and imagine your young adult stepping out of the front door on the first day of their career. They are smartly dressed, striding confidently, smiling and feeling and looking happy because all the planning you did together made all the difference. The benefits to them are more than we can even imagine.

Here’s a fun exercise that you can share with your son or daughter to help them think about themselves and determine their strengths and skills:

1. Get a new sheet of paper and write “10 things I like about myself”

2. Get a new sheet of paper and write “10 things people say that I am good at”

3. Get a new sheet of paper and write “10 jobs that I think may be interesting”

Now comes the fun part… take a look at the three sheets with you son or daughter and have a good chat about it. See if anything that leaps off the pages for them. It is still early days but this will help to get their creative juices flowing and thinking about what they may want to do in the future. If you’re really lucky you may even get an “a-ha” moment!


When people are happy in their work, they usually work harder and end up being more successful too. And the best bit, people are happy and successful when they match their skills, personal style and interests into their work.

Let’s help our young adults to understand themselves more and live a happy life!

We believe in you and we love serving you every day.

What to do next?

It would really make our day to read your feedback on about how you found this article. Just pop a little comment in the box below and do come back and tell us how you got on with the exercise.

Donovan Grant is a coach, mentor, blogger, speaker and IT professional who brings his wisdom of parenting for the last 21 years and coaching clients through the stages of raising youth and empowering leaders with life lessons that are changing generations.  He is a passionate and committed leader who believes that we all have the ability to help to change someone else’s life. Actively doing so as a catalyst for many years he teaches how to live a life of success, balance, integrity and fun, whether at work or at play. www.donovangrant.com

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  • Donovan, This is not only a brilliant piece with enormously valuable information it is so timely as well! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Donovan, This is not only a brilliant piece with enormously valuable information it is so timely as well! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Thank you Donovan for sharing! Great article and excellent idea as a ‘fun exercise’ to determine strengths and weaknesses! …Thanks, Hughie

  • Donovan, the “10 things ” exercises are important. I believe in letting teens explore the world with parents like bringing them to our work place, go on a vacation, visit the soup kitchen, shopping, talk about our own challenges etc. Great article.

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Excellent once again Donovan!  Thanks for sharing! 

  • Donovan, you are doing such a great and important work! Reaching out to the next generation. There are just not enough words to tell people how important it is to believe in our children. Everything depends on it; the economy, inventions, family-life. Everything. God has a purpose in this earth and He does that through people; we are responsible to educate them and get their gifts and calling out! Thanks Donovan!

  • Thanks Denny.

  • Cheers Hughie, I am glad it was fun. This is the ideal way to engage our young people.

  • Hi Claudia, exploration is key for our young people as they are growing up. We have to give them the space to do this!

  • Thanks Olga, it’s great to have you visit us. Your quote “God has a purpose in this earth and He does that through people; we are responsible to educate them and get their gifts and calling out!” is a great message for us all!

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