MODULE 3, UNIT 3: COMMUNITY AND EMPLOYER INVOLVEMENT

by Unre Visagie

Key questions

  • What is a community?
  • How can you leverage opportunities, expertise and resources in existing communities?
  • What keeps people apart or stratified?
  • What removes the barriers?

In this module we emphasise once more the value of serving people who are active in business, civic and civil communities.  What do I mean when I ask about serving people? You need to see the wider definition of a community by looking at the detail of employers and their employees. Once you have gained knowledge about the jobs in your community you will be in a position to identify needs (job opportunities) in the employment market. You can then pass this information on to career seekers who in turn can share their knowledge with their families and friends.

While you are engineering the exposure of employers to community members, you remain the facilitator and guide who helps the career seeker develop and implement productivity and growth plans.

The challenge is to start immediately by linking with the various work communities in the area where you live.

3.1 CIVIL, CIVIC, COMMON INTEREST AND THE WORKING COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

What constitutes the wider community?  Communities consist of the people within them and the links those people have with other communities. Communities are based on geographic location as well as being formed through common interests. In the tangible or physical sense we are always part of a family, the community where we live, an ethnic group, our nation and the globe. We also choose to be part of communities drawn together because of common interests, beliefs, values and occupations. The successful utilisation of these communities and the relationships within depend on your learning to manage these multiple communities simultaneously. Each one who is not yet productive or who wants to be more productive is your direct concern and his/her joblessness impacts heavily on the community in which he/she lives. These communities need you to be an active career guidance practitioner who leads the way to employment for all who want to learn about themselves and work.

PCAR03X, Unit 3, Activity 1

  1. Study the community and social principles.  Consider how it can assist you to choose and join communities and societies to match your industry and work choice. Once you have done this for yourself, you will be able to use the same techniques to help career seekers find their work match.
  2. Discuss what you learnt with your study colleagues.
  3. Use Dictionary, Wikipedia or Google and conduct an extensive search to learn more about communities and societies and how they function and benefit each other. Remember that you are exploring and discovering. Are you inspired by this information to think about the way in which you formulate questions that you ask clients? It should also create an awareness of the level at which you function.
  4. Answer the following questions:
  • How do you plan to access and use communities and societies as resources for your career guidance process? Write down two specific plans for each.
  • Think about a structured way in which you can grow with your own community and society. Write down two examples.
  • Use examples of communities and societies that you actually plan to access.

Capture your personal experiences and discoveries in your MiCareerBook for the CV exercises. Record your experiences while completing the above activities in your MiActivity Book as part of your assignments.

Feedback:

You now know that both a community and society can be formed in and by any local group linked to other groups. Your community and society have the potential to be as wide as you choose them to be. How can this be? All you need to do is to create a larger network in order to link your community with others.

The question to ask is:  How can you create such a large network? You need to link people in your geographical community to other communities and societies. While you are doing this, you will gain competencies and help them be more productive.

What can you do so that you and your community members will all learn more, know more, do more and earn more? You need to have the backing of your community and your community leaders for the career guidance service which you intend to offer. In this manner, you ensure that they will be there for you when you move. You will need to pass on this skill to career seekers as they too will need their own backup systems when they apply for positions.

How can you utilise your community’s activities in order to enhance the community members’ knowledge about career choices? How can you encourage them to climb their own knowledge and career ladders?  Explain to them that they will be productive and happy members of their own community because they form part of many communities and societies, such as:

  • Families and where they come from
  • The area where they currently live
  • Common interest communities as in sport
  • Common interest communities as in hobbies such as photography, etc.
  • Work communities
  • Travel communities
  • Internet communities
  • Church communities
  • Cultural communities
  • AND if they follow the process of building networks in their community, they will be a productive member of the work community.

3.2 WHAT SEPARATES PEOPLE FROM EACH OTHER?

People are generally separated from each other in some or other way. A prominent separation with a great effect on people’s lives is stratification. In sociological terms it means the hierarchical division according to caste, rank or class. In this context we are mainly focussed on stratification through class, and its cause which is knowledge based division.

There are, however, ways to overcome stratification and the effects thereof. Stratification can be bridged by facilitating access to people with resources through communities. Your task is to understand the nature of the problem and to accept that the more fortunate cannot reach out to the less fortunate (and visa versa) due to misinformation and insufficient skills.

Is this a fact which we have to accept? Or is it merely a problem to which a solution can be found? Of course, the problem can be solved, and you are part of the solution.

PCAR03X, Unit 3, Activity 2

  1. Consider how stratification and social stratification it can assist you to bridge the barriers that keep you or the career seeker from accessing work competencies and thus further opportunities.
  2. Discuss what you have learnt with your study colleagues.
  3. Use Dictionary, Wikipedia or Google and conduct an extensive search to learn more about stratification and its effects.  Remember that you are exploring and discovering. The information will inspire you to think about the manner in which you formulate questions that you ask clients. It should also create an awareness of the level at which you function.
  4. Answer the following questions:
  • How can you access and use communities and societies to eliminate stratifiers? Write down two specific uses for each.
  • Think about a structured way to grow with communities and societies to eliminate stratification. Write down two of your plans.
  • Suggest how people with little awareness can gain exposure to and start bridging the gaps in knowledge and experience to eliminate the personal factors cause individual stratification.

Capture your personal experiences and discoveries in your MiCareerBook for the CV exercises. Record your experiences while completing the above activities in your MiActivity Book as part of your assignments.

Feedback:

The most important ways to gain access to resources would be to access people in organisations, associations, civil and civic networks or communities.  The career guidance practitioner guides these groups to meet and facilitate flow of resources and access to competencies, resources and thus work.

3.3 IMPLEMENTATION

There are many bridges which you can cross to access communities and societies. These bridges will support the career seeker. When people get to know each other, it is usually mutually beneficial and as a result the stratifiers disappear.

In Module 5 you will use the knowledge of communities, societies and stratification to connect career seekers to industries and to training/the work of their choice. The PCAR career guidance course empowers you to prepare career seekers to access people in communities and societies with resources and opportunities.

Local resources must be found and utilised. The Department of Labour renders a service regarding different careers.  According to Aitken (sj: 138), the Department of Labour offers vocational guidance and psychometric testing free of charge to students over the age of 16 who are in Grade 12. This service is also offered to workers who are unhappy in their present employment. The Department of Labour also publishes a bilingual book (My Career), which describes approximately 500 careers in a fair amount of detail.

Find a more up to date occupational handbookSouth African references to the occupational handbook

3.4 CONCLUSION

Your personal insight and understanding of the process of entering the job market, as well as your participation in creating networks in your communities and societies will create access to knowledge and resources for career seekers.

Your experience regarding accessing leaders in local business, civic and civil communities and societies will directly benefit job seekers.

Your geographical community is just one such example. Serve your leaders and you help them grow while you grow with them. They will and can help you access resources and institutions and it will thus generate mutual benefit.

About Unre Visagie
I am a master coach with 30 years of career and business coaching experience. I have built and sold many of my own multi-million dollar companies. I have always built my companies based on the principle of successful people make a successful company. I invest in people. As your coach you get 30 years of experience to help you do the work you love and earn the salary you want.

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