Friday, 7 September 2012

Newsletter Issue 223, September 2012

Sam Young Newsletter

Issue 223, September 2012
Hi guys,
You have all probably worked out the profession that suits you. But what can you do to help someone who doesn't know What They Want to Be When They Grow Up? Read on below.
What does this 'active learning' thing really mean? Read Learning is not a spectator sport
Don't forget, if you want to be taken off my mailing list, click here to send me a reply e-mail and I will remove your name.

How Do I Decide What I Want to Be When I Grow Up?

Recently on the HRINZ LinkedIn blog, an HR undergraduate student posted a piece asking for advice. They were considering going on to do a Masters in HR because they didn't really know what they wanted to work at in the HR field; they hadn't yet found what pushed their buttons. From their post, it appeared to me that they were also questioning that they wanted to be in the HR field, full stop.
I was very interested that the HR people all told the student to go and do some different papers, so as not to remain too narrowly focused in their development by doing as Masters that focused on HR.
I was quite surprised, as my reading of the student's issue was that they didn't even know that HR was going to be the career for them, let alone any inkling of what other things that may interest them. They sounded lost.
Unfortunately, despite the advice given from HR people and one careers person, the student hasn't replied at all.
My careers-oriented approach was to suggest that they try five things.
  • One is to just sit down and do a SWOT analysis of 'you'. Write all your ideas on four sheets of paper. See if a theme starts to show in what you have written down.
  • Two is to go to careersNZ's website and do their Career Quest quiz (at That might consolidate your ideas.
  • Three, if that doesn't help enough, is to go & do a Holland code test online (try and select free career test or and then go to and enter your three letter code to see what professions pop up.
  • Four, if that doesn't provide more clarity, approach your Uni library, and get a copy of Marjolein Lip-Wiersma & Lani Morris' The Map of Meaning. Read it, and do the exercises; then you are much more likely to have an idea where your real interests lie (this book is based on 12 years of career research done in NZ at Canterbury, in the Netherlands and in the UK).
  • Five, if you are still feeling tentative, make an appointment to see a CDANZ-registered career practitioner. They will guide you through lots of other ways of analysing what it is you want to do, such as family occupational trees, Super's rainbow, work trials, VUW's Career Guides, formal personality testing, and loads of other things.
It is hard, sometimes, to sort out what, amongst all the choices, is 'right' for us. Lots of people can offer us all the advice in the world, but we have to do what fits each of us individually. Trying and not liking something is great, because it means we have narrowed our choices; at least we know something that we don't want to do.
I wish that HR student the very best of luck on their search, and hope they pop back to see the advice offered :-)

Learning is not a Spectator Sport

What a great phrase: "Learning is not a spectator sport".
It feels so instinctively correct; that we can't be passive and learn. We must be active, critical thinkers in order to learn. Wow - that might mean effort. Ouch.
I have been thinking about what active learning means, and came across a lecturer called Jenny Romack, who is very interested in the same thing. Jenny is at California State University, and reflects and writes a lot about learning and how best to ensure that her students learn.
Following is a quote from Romack (2006, as cited by Faculty Focus, 2012, p. 4-5) summing up the effort active learning requires:
"Learning is not a spectator sport. Fundamentally, the responsibility to learn is yours and yours alone. For learning to happen in any course, you must take an active role in the process. For our class, you are expected to come to class ‘prepared’ and ‘ready to learn,’ which requires you ‘to read’ and ‘to study’ the assigned reading ‘before’ you come to class. Being prepared for class enables you to construct a knowledge base on which subsequent learning rests.
"During our class, we don’t ‘cover’ content, which means I talk less to get you to talk about what you are learning. You will be engaging in Learning Tasks (out of class and in class) that require you to (a) use a variety of reasoning strategies to address issues and problems, and (b) write reflectively about what you are learning, how it relates to what you already know about the content, and how it relates to your life."
The reason I am passing this to you all is as a reminder that we all need to prepare BEFORE an event. We need to do our research. We need to read background documents. We need to think of questions that we could ask ahead of time, and take responsibility so we get the most out of our learning experiences.
Let's be active out there :-)

Reference: Romack, Dr Jennifer L. (October 2006). "Enhancing Students’ Readiness to Learn" in 11 Strategies for Getting Students to Read What’s Assigned. (2012). USA: Faculty Focus. Retrieved 28 June 2012 from

Repeat Find in Word

To find a particular piece of text in Word, press F3, enter the text you're seeking in the dialogue box, and press Enter.
You don't need to keep the dialogue box open to find other instances, though. Once you click on the cancel button, you should see there are some double arrows at the bottom of the right-hand side scroll bars, which have turned blue.
Clicking on either will take you - forwards or backwards - through the document, to the next place this text occurs.

TLAs for SMEs

Here are this newsletter's TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms) for you:
  • HE, Higher Education; ie, the tertiary sector.

Please feel free to email me with any TLAs that you want to get the bottom (meaning!) of.

Tips, Short+Hot Keys
Over the next few newsletters, we are going to look at all you can do with panes. This time we look at Word:
  • Word "Close pane or remove a window split in a document" Alt & Shift & C
  • Word "Go to the next pane or move between the navigation pane and topic pane when working with Help menu" F6

Hot Linx
Could this be the start of wireless battery charging? Check out the possible new Nokia wireless charging port at
Check out ZDNet's article on Microsoft and the GatherReader e-reader which would be in great demand for anyone writing and researching reports, books or articles, at
TechRepublic have a great tip on how to put text in the margins of Word documents; check out their second way in the article at
Springwise (sister company of Trendwatching) reports two online tools for job seekers; Apply, where they e-match jobs with your MBTI type; and ResumUp which creates a résumé based on your social media profile;

                                Catch you again soon!! E-mail your suggestions to me here

No comments :

Post a Comment

Thanks for your feedback. The elves will post it shortly.