Four words that seem to have become ubiquitous. Uttered by learned people, they convey the extreme emotion felt, resulting in “speechlessness”. Parroted by less learned people, they often preface the delivery of lots more words (sadly).
But as this phrase has grown in popularity, I’ve been struck by the possibility that they might also be a cry for help. “I have no words……. to describe my situation, but I wish I did, because “this” sucks”, perhaps?
In this sense, then I think bizenko becomes the missing words. bizenko is designed to explain a major life situation that up until now hasn’t had sufficient explanation. Career planning.
In a recent blogpost on the CEGNET website, Anthony Barnes very honestly noted that sometimes in the world of careers, advisors were too busy “getting on with the job to give it (careers) much thought”. In addition, he explained that this habit left “too many assumptions unexamined and unchallenged”. (In defence of careers advisors, I’m sure this situation might exist in many or most jobs).
For me, this comment highlights the pressing urgency for young people, and their parents to take a greater role in preparing for their own career. If career advisors and employers are too busy to challenge the status quo, then the individual must. One assumption that often goes unchallenged is this basic equation:
Qualification + Polished Interview performance = Secure career
This “equation” looms large in our education landscape. The assumption allows people to think that employers will always train and develop their employees. This isn’t necessarily true, and it isn’t necessarily proof of malice when training doesn’t happen.
The assumption allows people to think that employers are (or should be) a superior partner whose needs must always come first. However, I believe employment only works well for either party if both achieve satisfaction. In order to achieve that mutual satisfaction, the individual needs to be able to understand the needs and motivations of the employer, as well as to demonstrate their ability to meet those needs whilst simultaneously meeting their own.
But how does an individual achieve this negotiation without the vocabulary and contextual understanding of the workplace (and not just their own workplace, a variety of workplaces from which they might learn and apply parallels)? At present, I don’t believe that they can (but I know that bizenko can help them!)
This variety of information underpins a modern career. Information about the job application process alone, is short-termist and only serves to perpetuate the unbalanced relationship between employer and employee. We need careers education to “give words” so that young people can sustain themselves in meaningful employment over time.