Career Facilitation & Exploration through Group Work by Prof. Norman Amundson

A Review of Career Facilitation & Exploration Through Group Work

Workshop conducted by Dr. Norman Amundson, Professor Emeritus, UBC 

Written by Ms. June Ho, Associate of HKACMGM

As part of the 60th anniversary celebration of Hong Kong Association of Careers Masters and Guidance Masters, we proudly hosted the captioned master workshop for the career teachers of our member schools on 6 May 2019 at CUSCS.

Led by Professor Emeritus Dr. Norman Amundson, the group of 30 inquisitive and creative teachers began to venture the journey from intrinsic perspective through Hope-Action Inventory (HAI) to extrinsic projection via group games based on HOPE for life.  Let’s throw a glance to some of the highlights from the workshop.

The Hope-Action Inventory (HAI) is a self-assessment of the degree of clients’ hope-centered career competencies and an evaluation tool to measure the effectiveness of career interventions.  Through completing questions categorized under subheadings “Self-Reflection”, “Self-Clarity”, “Visioning”, “Goal-Setting & Planning”, “Implementing & Adapting”, clients will be provided with an HAI Report mapped with quantitative indications of their strengths and weaknesses.    HAI contributes a self-portrait of the clients’ career competencies and a connecting point where career facilitators can intervene and advise precisely.  We were directed to try our turn on the website: with the Code: avyhD9n.  Given a grace period of 6 weeks of free access to the website, you are welcome to try it yourself. 

HOPE is always a driving force for careers and life planning.  In facilitating careers guidance and counseling, it’s good to start with “Mattering”, seeing everybody worthwhile and significant through giving proper responses, caring and appreciation.  We were reminded to uphold some of the important elements such as “Inclusion – a sense of belonging”, “Control – a sense of safety” and “Trust – a sense of closeness with others” so as to complement our practices with effectiveness. 

Learners were lifted to see another level of exploration through group work.  We were asked to outline the favorite things we enjoyed doing, then in groups we shared and responded, cultivating a connection among group members.  Through interactions, we were reminded to connect people and get to know more about them.  The “Story Wheel” well-manifested the impact of others on our stories and identity.  Through personal experience sharing (storytelling), we sketched and mapped the client’s strengths through positive feedback.  Build on clients’ strengths is always the rule to win in facilitating guidance and counseling. 

Projecting our vision from other perspectives in helping people, we were led to a “Time to Walk the Problem” – a cue to set us off from the frontline of ACT than to words.  “The Need for a Backswing” was illustrated through using a ball launcher, exemplified the need to build our own energy for preparing short but dynamic shots through the power of synergy.  The metaphorical run reiterated a crucial guide to the learners: Helping others requires collaboration, energy, reviewing, creativity, direction setting, learning, releasing and following through.   

We came to an eventful journey of “Entrepreneurial Exercise” when the groups had to start their own business through working as a team, finding each one’s role in the business, exercising their creativity and encouraging each other to use their full range of talents and abilities.  Issues pertaining to personal qualities of a leader and leadership approach and skills were briefed through the pentagonal model focused on Group Goals and Activities in 5 Stages.  A triggering question to further develop the business; “If one more personnel to be added to your business, who will you put in?”  Through the group sharing, we were reminded to be creative when changes needed.  Articulation on leadership in business syncs perfectly with our role as a career guidance facilitator.    

To show our care and support to all the participating teachers, hot sandwiches and drinks were served as a small token of appreciation from our Association.  We always uphold our vision and mission of providing professional support to all the frontline teachers regarding students’ careers and life planning.

P.S. The PowerPoint of this workshop can be downloaded from the link below with the consent of Professor Amundson.