23 October 2017

What about this cake? Career Accelerator program in O4

How to bake that cake?

Or, how to search for an idea of how to express oneself and find a dream job. How to put the cake into a form but do not format one’s own personality in the process. This is what we were talking about in O4, a place where, among other things, the Career Accelerator program is organized.

The debate is behind us now. The room is crammed with people, substantive discussion is intertwined with anecdotes, jokes of people employed full time or no longer employed and creating their own start-ups. Or doing both. It was close to life, creative and also analytical and critical. Well, this is what today’s world is about when searching for a job, an interesting work for yourself is not easy but feasible.

 

Working full time? – softly but consistently

As our panellists say, young people today are creative, fast, extremely efficient and active in the new media; however, that activity and commitment decrease very quickly. It means that things worth working on include the development of soft skills such as patience and completing the tasks we assume (“I will send my offer to those fantastic artist agencies from my list for which I would like to work so much”).

Today’s employers expect us to be aware of our strengths, actual skills, competencies and aptitudes. And that we will be able to present them convincingly. Experience on exactly the same position is not so important (employers are ready to teach new employees the specific features of their firms), it is more important to be active, communicative, loyal and consistent.

“Each of us has “natural competitive edges” resulting from the personality type as well as unique aptitudes we can define as a talent. The combination of all these features offers us an outline of potential possibilities we can boast about”, says Kamila Czarnomska, a career coach and the owner of Trening Kariery. “An employer wants to know you well and be sure that you will match their organizational culture. However, in order to be able to do that, you have to know who you are”, she adds.

To follow one’s professional dreams, one also needs determination, persistence (blind but not stupid), stressed Wiktor Jodłowski, CEO Talkersi. “Life will verify our choices and decisions; however, an important thing is to define goals and, after that, loyally and consistently strive to realize them.

A precise definition of own competence and matching it with opportunities offered by the market is a huge challenge for young people. This is why we created our authorial program: AKCELERATOR KARIERY (Career Accelerator) that answers all the questions mentioned above. With an active participation of experts, we try to guide participants through the entire decision-making process related to the choice of one’s professional path. For example, we help define talents, determine competences and find ways to take advantage of them at a job interview. We also work on strategies of further career development at workshops and optional classes. Additionally, intense business English conversations are a part of the program”, says Martyna Czarnobaj-Borowska, the project manager for Akcelerator Kariery implemented as a part of the O4 co-working.

 
Perhaps a START- UP? – how to bake that cake

“A start up emerges as a continuation of one’s own interests and hobbies. People who work for American corporations go back home, bake cakes, tinker, play using their computers. Later, they establish firms related to what they like doing”, said Józef Balicki, an investor, Project Manager and Mentor in O4, referring to how to go from a corporation to one’s own business. The same can be said about how to learn and start committing one’s talents, hobbies and even free time to the career. Transfer what we like doing and feel good doing into professional skills. It is worthwhile to follow your dreams instead of just meeting others’ expectations. “You do not have to establish your own firm; you can also pursue your passion while working for someone else. It is possible to combine both. It is sometimes better to bake cakes for someone than to manage your own cake business”, argued Maciej Stępa, Profit Plus President and a mentor in the Career Accelerator.

“As soon as they understood what they wanted to do and started doing it, they felt happy”, said Ola Chołody-Trapp, Head of Research, Infuture Hatalska Foresight Institute, about people she studied who, after varied professional experience, more or less successful decisions, found their dream job only after they stopped following others’ advice.

 


However, it may happen that someone already has a business idea but does not know how to start and whether to start at all?

A start-up sounds magical: days off whenever we want them, subsidies for a dream project, a freelancer’s lifestyle. This is all true but a start-up also entails hard work, many doubts and verification of assumptions. “Everything looks great on paper”, said Wiktor Jodłowski, stating that many excellent ideas, concepts and sales plans are never implemented or are verified in real life. If you decide to have a start-up because this is something that speaks to your soul and you know that the one and only, wonderful application that allows you to listen to Pharaoh ants marching is a hit in the world of science then fight for it! Research the market, find biologists and IT specialists who will share your vision! But, if not, just be frank with yourself and verify the assumptions.

We live in the times that value good interpersonal relations at work more than money. As Anna Maria Wiśniewska, the Socialme Agency owner, stressed during the debate, it is mentors who turn out to be irreplaceable in the business establishment and development process. Mentoring offers a range of benefits, inspirations and support when developing one’s own business”, adds Ania.

The Career Accelerator is worth mentioning here again: it offers participants the possibility to develop their ideas by selecting their own business path (path designing in the cooperation with the Project Startup, Black Pearls VC and Profit Plus). The project with specialists and entrepreneurs from various sectors participating in it helps young people get closer to the business. Experts share knowledge and experience with participants, offer practical advice and, as the last year’s edition showed, willingly establish future business relations”, says Martyna Czarnobaj-Borowska. “All of us have started our professional career once or changed its direction, even by 180 degrees, and had similar fears and doubts in the process. This is why taking advantage of the practice, talents and knowledge shared by others, exchanging observations and reflections and, as a consequence, consciously modelling one’s value on the labour market is so important.”

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