Brain power

The power of career conversations

Originally posted on The Horizons Tracker.

Monash University research1 indicates that the indecisiveness and uncertainty young individuals face regarding their careers can have adverse consequences, including helplessness, depression, stress, lack of purpose, and despair.

The transition from education to the workforce has become increasingly unpredictable, with employment markets being more fiercely competitive, resulting in a notable rise in career uncertainty among the youth.

The study encompassed a sample of approximately 2,800 Australian secondary school students. The findings revealed prevalent feelings of career uncertainty and anxiety. A significant proportion, precisely 33.8% of survey respondents, “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that they lacked clarity about the most suitable career paths for them.

Additionally, 40.5% of respondents frequently experienced feelings of aimlessness regarding their career trajectory. These manifestations of uncertainty and the subsequent lack of direction gave rise to significant concerns among the surveyed students.

Making sense

“Our recent research shows that when young people have conversations with others about their careers, they have lower levels of career uncertainty and anxiety,” the researchers explain.

“These conversations can cover young people’s awareness of their own interests and strengths, their career goals and preferences, their knowledge of the requirements and conditions of success of different study-career pathways, as well as their ideas about transitioning from education settings into work. They can make a real difference.”

They explain that when young people think about their future they often experience a wide range of emotions. After completing Year 12, the multitude of available pathways can prove overwhelming, especially as students strive to excel in their final year of high school. The abundance of options requires careful consideration, making it a challenging task to discern the most suitable direction amidst academic pursuits.

Article source: The Power Of Career Conversations.

Header image source: Kenny Eliason on Unsplash.


  1. Gleeson, J., & Walsh, L. (2023). Managing career uncertainty and anxiety: the power of career conversations. myfuture Insights series. Melbourne, Education Services Australia.
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Adi Gaskell

I'm an old school liberal with a love of self organizing systems. I hold a masters degree in IT, specializing in artificial intelligence and enjoy exploring the edge of organizational behavior. I specialize in finding the many great things that are happening in the world, and helping organizations apply these changes to their own environments. I also blog for some of the biggest sites in the industry, including Forbes, Social Business News, Social Media Today and, whilst also covering the latest trends in the social business world on my own website. I have also delivered talks on the subject for the likes of the NUJ, the Guardian, Stevenage Bioscience and CMI, whilst also appearing on shows such as BBC Radio 5 Live and Calgary Today.

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