Easy Guide to Career Success and Comfortable Retirement

Book Review on Guide to Career Success and Comfortable Retirement

Posted in Retirement Planning

Book Review by Professor Abiodun Adegbile,

Institute of Education, UI, Ibadan

It is quite a thing of joy to be privileged to write on this highly educative book written by somebody who is very much in the area of industrial relations. To be precise, the author had his master’s degree in Industrial and Labour Relations and has gotten a wealth of experience to the tune of more than seventeen years. This implies that the author must have been interacting with different ideas in the area of industrial and labour relations out of which the concepts of ‘career success’ and ‘comfortable retirement’ have been seriously considered in this book.

This is a 17-chapter book and it can be structurally grouped into three main parts viz: Conceptual Issues on Career, Employment, and Comfortable Retirement. However, the author has decided to put the book into three sections with the sections having 7, 5, and 4 and the conclusive remarks being the last; and the seventh chapter. I think it is highly commendable for organizing the book into three sections and the captions given to the sections together make clear the comprehensiveness of the coverage of the title of the book. The structural design also arrests the interest of the reader as well as helping him to have a brighter idea of the message which the author is conveying.

In the section devoted to career choice, planning, and development. I noticed that all the conceptual issues are spelled out in clear and unequivocal terms. The ability to do this thoroughly and effectively is quite impressive.

Section 2, which captions, “Self-employment”, is highly educative. This is a section where a great number of people will immensely benefit from the impressive ideas in the book. It provides different ways of making life comfortable for people; and more importantly, making them be self-reliant. A very good idea that is established here is the fact that there are alternatives to paid jobs.

Section 3, which is the last section, is titled “Comfortable Retirement”. This concerns mostly workers who are in paid employment. The concept of “retirement” and fears associated with it are carefully and exhaustively discussed. A research report given in chapter 16 in the third section makes the book more intellectual. This gives an additional feather to the cap of the book. A pertinent question raised in this report is ‘Can a government or employer who finds it very difficult to pay salaries be able to pay gratuity and pension?’ This is food for thought for every reader. And to fail to prepare very well for one’s retirement is to prepare to fail or suffer during the retirement days.

On the basis of the foregoing, and because succeeding in a book writing task is obviously great and no mean task. I wish to congratulate the author on this great feat. Therefore, in view of its useful contents, I heartily recommend this book to students, teachers, guidance and counselors, those who are still in active service, and retirees.

Professor Joseph Abiodun Adegbile
Institute of Education
The University of Ibadan.

CONTENTS

SECTION ONE


CHAPTER ONE


Conceptual Issues … … … … … … 16

 Definition of Concepts

  • Job
  • Vocation
  • Profession
  • Work
  • Occupation

CHAPTER TWO
Preparing A Job Winning Application and C.V. … … … 23

  • Job Application
  • The Job Winning Curriculum Vitae/Resume

CHAPTER THREE
Job Interview … … … … … … 31

  • Basic Information
  • Preparation and Background information
  • Checklist for interview
  • Types of Interview
  • On the interview day and during the interview process
  • Negotiation of salaries and incentives
  • Why people do not secure their most desired jobs
  • General preparation for an interview

CHAPTER FOUR
Career: General Perspective … … … … … 41

  • What is a Career?
  • Factors Affecting Career Choice
  • Other Factors Affecting Career Choice
  • Types of Unemployment
  • Implications of gainful employment and unemployment

CHAPTER FIVE
Career Choice, Planning and Development… … … 57

  • Definition
  • Basic Process of Career Planning
  • Career Planning and Development, A joint Responsibility
  • Involvement in Career Planning and Development
  • Positive steps towards Career Choice and Decisions
  • Personal and Practical Guide for Formulating Career Action Plan
  • Sustaining Career Planning Development
  • Framework for Successful Career Planning and Development

CHAPTER SIX
Trends in Career Development… … … … 73

  • Multi-Disciplinary Employment Approach
  • Casualisation and Contractualisation of Labour

CHAPTER SEVEN
Coping with Work Environment … … … … 87

  • Contemporary Work Environment
  • Future Work Environment
  • Challenges and Coping Strategies

SECTION TWO

CHAPTER EIGHT

Self-employment: Alternative to Paid Employment …… 92

  • Introduction
  • The relevance of Early Self-Employed/Entrepreneurship
  • Transiting from paid Employment to Self-Employment

CHAPTER NINE
Organizational Framework of a Business Take-off…… 96

  • Pre-Incorporation/Registration Activities
  • Post Incorporation/Registration Activities
  • Factors Affecting Business Decision

CHAPTER TEN
Feasibility Studies/Capital Requirement … … …. 102
Feasibility Study

  • Business Review
  • Stages of Business Development
  • Capital Requirement
  • Source of Capital/Finance

CHAPTER ELEVEN
Principles of Sustainable Business Development… … … … 107

  • Introduction
  • Issues in Sustainability of Business
  • Secrets of Business Success
  • Investment Opportunity

CHAPTER TWELVE
Family Business … … … … … … … 121

  • What is Family Business?
  • Characteristics of a family business
  • Contributions of a family business to growth and development
  • Planning for continuity and effective succession

SECTION THREE

CHAPTER THIRTEEN

The Concept of Retirement … … … … … 128

  • Introduction
  • Retirement is inevitable
  • The age factor in retirement
  • Fears associated with retirement
  • Family factors in retirement decision

CHAPTER FOURTEEN
Action Plans for Retirement … … … … … 145

  • What is retirement planning all about?
  • Retirement checklist/information
  • Retirement business
  • Retirement phobia questionnaire

CHAPTER FIFTEEN
Handling Life After Retirement … … … … … 159

  • Stages of retirement.
  • Life: Your Greatest Treasure.
  • Issues on stress

CHAPTER SIXTEEN
Research Report on Retirement … … … … … 170

  • Introduction
  • Theoretical Framework
  • Analysis of Continuity and Disengagement Theories

CHAPTER SEVENTEEN

Conclusion
… … … … … … … … 184
Appendix 
Pension Fund Administrators in Nigeria … … … … 189
Bibliography … … … … … … … … 195

CHAPTER ONE


CONCEPTUAL ISSUES

The definition and clear understanding of the connection between certain key concepts will no doubt help to achieve meaningful career choice and development. These concepts are Job, Vocation, Profession, Work, and Occupation. Furthermore, their interrelationship brings into fore their importance to a person’s career choice and career as a whole.
In view of the above, we shall first consider in-depth definitions and interrelations.

DEFINITION OF CONCEPTS

JOB

A job is a particular task, duty, or specific schedule that is performed on a regular or agreed basis in an organisation or within the society for several reasons. The series or combinations of various jobs being performed usually culminate in occupation or work and this varies from one organisation to the other. For instance, teaching is a job that is part of the overall work of a Lecturer; others being research, writing, and community development.

A job is either classified as high or low trust and this varies from country to country. The examples below are drawn from the Nigerian experience.

High Trust Jobs

High trust jobs are jobs that are termed to be honorable and they attract societal recognition. They are termed noble professions and anyone who engages in any of such jobs is treated with respect in society. Those involved in high trust jobs carry along with them their job-based personalities; anywhere they find themselves, they enjoy front seat recognition and have access to comfortable work and post-work opportunities. Apart from the above, the more experienced they become on the job, the more valuable their input.
The list of jobs that could be regarded as high trust is long and relative. However, the dynamism with which you handle your job, coupled with the societal perception of such jobs goes a long way in determining your job rating. Examples of high trust jobs include occupying important management positions within an organisation, performing highly skilled jobs within the society, etc.

Low Trust Jobs

Low trust job holders are those who render extremely personalized services for the well-being of those who perform high trust jobs. Low trust job holders are often known to display a high level of self-pity, resentment, and job alienation and their income are usually low. Those in this category include watchmen, drivers, stewards, cooks, etc. Some professionals could be categorized here but as they develop their skills and get more experienced, they are apt to get jobs with much better conditions of service.

VOCATION

Vocation refers to activities, trade, or occupation, and others constituting a lifestyle expressed in time, energy, and ability. Examples of a vocation include pastoral and related activities, the Military, Para-military, politics, and all forms of counseling work. Elements of a vocation include being specifically gifted, the absolute commitment to working, enjoyment of great autonomy, deriving feeling of importance, and intrinsically rewarding.

PROFESSION

Easy Guide to Career Success and Comfortable Retirement

This is a form of employment that is respected in the society as honourable and is available only to an educated person after training in some special branch of knowledge. Those who engage themselves in making living by satisfying the needs of others could also be referred to as professionals. Therefore, to be a successful professional, one must possess the capability, skill, ability, and talents that are suitable for such a profession in many professions, the practitioners have to develop their skills and show a high level of performance to enjoy or attract a high level of recognition or patronage. The following are types of professions:

Realistic Profession

The realistic professional belongs to the group of persons who do their work by seeking objective, concrete goals, and tasks. They use things, tools, machines, people, animals, etc. to perform their duties. These professionals include skilled labour workers in agriculture, engineering, outdoor conservation work, and the like.

Intellectual/Investigative Profession

The intellectual professional is one who does his work through the use of intelligence, manipulation of ideas, words, and symbols. Such a person is best matched with an environment that brings him in contact with abstract and creative abilities. Such occupations include writing, teaching and so on. A person involved in investigative work, on the other hand, is one who does his job by selecting goals that frequently involve working with ideas and require an extensive amount of thinking. It involves searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.

Social Profession

The social professional is the person who does his work by selecting tasks that demand the use of interpersonal skills and has an interest in other people. Such a person is best matched with an environment that requires him to interpret and modify human behaviour, such as social work, counseling, religious activities, teaching, and work which requires organising others.

Conventional Profession

A conventional professional is a person who copes with life by selecting goals and tasks that are sanctioned by society and custom. Conventional professionals frequently get involved in following set procedures and routines. Such professionals are best matched with environments that require systematic and routine processing, various types of office work and administration. It can include working with data and details more than with ideas. There is usually a clear line of authority to follow.

Artistic Profession

The artistic professional is one who uses feelings, intuition, emotions, and imagination to create artworks or products. Such a person is best matched with an environment that requires the interpretation or creation of artistic forms through taste, feelings, and imagination, such as writing, fine arts, and performing arts.

Enterprising Profession

The enterprising professional is one who copes with life by selecting goals and tasks that permit the expression of high energy, enthusiasm, creativity, adventure, dominance, and impulsiveness. The enterprising profession frequently involves starting up and carrying out projects. It sometimes requires risk-taking and often deals with businesses. Such a professional is best matched with an environment that places a premium on verbal capability, directing and persuading other people, salesmanship, entrepreneurship. management, politics, Foreign Service, and the like.
However, some people train for a profession which they may not be eventually practised due to one circumstance or the other or because it is in contrast with their personal disposition, orientation, and environment.
WORK
Work could be described as the combination of jobs, duties, or tasks that a person does, or responsibilities assigned to a person especially in other to earn money. Work may be classified into either brain or handwork; it can also be distinguished by its nature into different categories:

The Classifications of Work


Brain Work

Brain works are those works that are done through the creation of ideas, decision-making, execution of policies and other intellectual activities. The performance level of brain workers is measured in abstract terms such as the quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of their output. They are usually highly skilled. For instance, Managing Directors, Vice-Chancellors, Accountants, Teachers, Administrative Officers, Entrepreneurs, Engineers etc. are examples of brain workers.

Hand Work

Unlike the brain works, handwork requires the engagement of intensive labour. They also demand the physical dissipation of energy and are usually evaluated in concrete terms such as numbers of blocks molded, unit completed or areas covered. Examples of hand workers are bricklayers, gardeners, load carriers, etc.

Nature of Work
Extension Work

This is a kind of work that has no starting or closing hours. It has no specific workplace and no distinction between office and home in the course of performing one’s duties. The work of Pastors or Military personnel could be regarded as extension work because they are on duty at all times and places.

Neutral Work

This is a kind of work that terminates at the office or workplace. This does not extend to the home front. For instance, the work of some technical operators ends the moment they close for the day as the type of equipment they operate could only be found in their workplace.

Opposition Work

This is a type of work people are not comfortable doing. At the slightest opportunity, those engaged in opposition work usually abandon it due to either lack of interest, lack of dignity or low economic returns. For example, some who engage in labor-intensive work usually look for a way of escape while those who feel they are engaged in uncomplimentary work do not want people to know what they do. Certain categories of workers are noted for hiding their uniforms or tools in bags while going to or returning from work. Therefore, opposition works are principally determined by the individual perceptions of those who engage in them.
Generally, possession of adequate knowledge of the nature of work by employees is imperative for a successful career as this will assist in the course of assessing the degree of work value, involvement, and satisfaction which will, in turn, assist in taking appropriate steps towards choosing a career or taking steps to correct unfavourable work-related experience.

OCCUPATION

This is an individual’s main source of earning a living. It is the main job, employment, business, trade, handwork, vocation, and others in which he or she is engaged at a particular time and done on a regular basis. Occupation could further be described as a productive activity or a clearly defined work that could be found in various settings in which one is engaged permanently and which occupies one’s productive time. For instance, farming, teaching, processing of shipping documents, pastoral ministries are forms of occupation. In a similar vein, an occupation may be a network or combination of various activities drawn from the above examples.

Book Review by Professor Abiodun Adegbile, Institute of Education, UI, Ibadan It is quite a […]

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The Power of Appreciation

Posted in Soft Skills

William James, a well-known psychologist, and philosopher said, “The deepest principle of human nature is a craving to be appreciated.”
If we are honest with ourselves, we all want and need to feel valued for who we are and recognized for our contributions and accomplishments. It is important for us to know that we have made a difference in someone’s life.
If a person takes the time to express their heartfelt appreciation for something we have done, it boosts our spirit, passion, and purpose.
It builds our self-confidence, self-esteem, and our entire self-image. It gives us the energy and motivation to work harder and do more.
It is on this note that I shall be examining the:

SIX BENEFITS OF SHOWING APPRECIATION

1. When you give people a sincere compliment, words of encouragement, or just a warm smile, you are making their world a better place. You are making them feel appreciated and valuable.

2. When you express your approval or gratitude for something they have done, you will not only enhance their lives, but you will enrich yours as well. You will feel more fulfilled because you have done something to make someone else’s life better.

3. One of the laws of the universe states that what you give is what you get in return. It costs little or nothing and it almost always follows suit that they will demonstrate their gratitude for what you do.

4. When you show any interest in others by noticing the good things they have done; they will be drawn to you like a magnet. It will accelerate the relationship-building process and enhance their overall impression of you.

5. It will increase your value to the market. When you show your appreciation to others, their respect for you will grow and so will your influence as a leader. In today’s world, people have choices. They absolutely prefer to work with people they like and trust and who show an interest in them.

6. It is a free form of currency. People will do more for recognition than they will for money. If you are in a leadership position, remember that people will work harder and do more if they know they will be recognized for their accomplishments. Show them you care and they will be loyal to you, even if better opportunities come their way.
Having considered the six benefits of showing your appreciation, let us now examined six tips you can explore to show appreciation.

1. Be genuine about your praise and do not expect anything in return for being nice.

2. Be very specific with your words and use the person’s name whenever possible. This makes it more meaningful. For example, “Samuel, thank you for making us feel so welcome when we were with you yesterday. It really contributed a great deal to our well-being”

3. Demonstrating eye contact and positive body language goes hand in hand with the words you choose.

4. Think of special ways to show your gratitude. For instance, you can buy a small gift item or do something special for your spouse, friends, and loved ones that you know he or she would appreciate. You do not have to spend a lot of money for the thank-you to have value.

5. Send a handwritten thank you card or note of appreciation. To me, I appreciate a specially designed or handwritten appreciation than a pre-made special thank you card. Most people do not take the time to do this simple act.

6. If the praise or appreciation relates to a specific act or circumstance, give it as soon after the event as possible to have the most impact.

MY CHARGE

I want to encourage you to make your expression of appreciation stand out from the crowd. Make sure it is genuine and something that will make an impression. It will require more effort on your part but it will be worth it.

While going the extra mile is admirable, do not forget the simple little things we can do on a daily basis to let people know they are appreciated. For example, the handwritten thank you note you write, is probably more than sending 30 emails on the same issue. For every gift you buy for your wife, children, parent, friends, and well-wishers, it is more than saying thank you 50 times.

ACTION PLANS

To execute your Appreciation Plans, make a list of those people who regularly do things for you, including, your co-workers, friends, family members, and those who work under your leadership. When this list is complete, go back over each name and determine how you can express your appreciation for the things they do for you in a way that makes them feel noticed and valued.

Let me also encourage you to thank 100% of the people for 100% of the things they do to make your life better, even if it is part of their job description or you feel it is their responsibility to you. No matter who these people are, everyone deserves to be thanked.

Begin to adopt an attitude of gratitude today as I leave you with a quote from Robert Cavett that say!

Finally, one thing we must all understand is that “Three billion people on the face of the earth go to bed hungry every night, but four billion people go to bed every night hungry for a simple word of encouragement and recognition.”

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Practical Conflict Resolution Mechanism

Posted in Personal Development
CONFLICT RESOLUTION
I have come to conclude that there are two perspectives of understanding life. The first is the conflict perspective while the second is the consensus perspective. In other words, if you check the situations around you, you will either be faced with the conflict perspective where you will be asking questions bothering on the conflicting nature of issues such as differences in disposition, height, gender, size, gifts, endowment, knowledge, status, wealth, trusts, commitment, treatment, tolerance, authority, power, attitude, behaviour, perspective, quietness, gentleness, loudness, stubbornness, meanness, etc. Definitely, with all these variations, there are bound to be CONFLICTS.conflict, ecology, environmentThe consensus perspective deals with the fact that the only way you can understand life is to see it from the point of view that all conflicts will end in CONSENSUS. Either to stay away, or stay together after considering several issues. This is based on the fact that looking for that perfect situation is a utopian ideology. Perfect situations will not exist but individuals or groups must look for consensus within the conflictual nature around him or her through a critical evaluation of self. This self-evaluation is important because by your various actions, social status and disposition, others also have the conviction that you are a key contributor to the conflict they are experiencing, whereas, you might ignore this fact and be blaming others.
The conclusion is that all conflicts will end in CONSENSUS. The consensus, in this case, maybe genuine, fake, win-win, depending on the parties, approaches, sincerity, and circumstances, principles and trust involved. The consensus is not a permanent guarantee that conflict will not occur again because the entire creation is sitting on conflict, exploitation, and control of one group by the other. Except that the way towards peace is consensus.
HOW TO ACHIEVE PEACE AND CONSENSUS
Believe in the existence of conflicts at creation, in every sphere of life and that every human being is a critical part and sources of conflict, including your very self.
Believe in the fact that consensus is a sure solution to the conflict. Explore the use of CAMAG.
The use of CAMAG is precipitated by the fact that you ask the following questions when confronted with issues of conflict or consensus.
(1) Confront
After asking yourself a series of questions, consider whether to confront the issues at stake once and for all irrespective of the consequences. It’s certainly clear that some issues should not be allowed to continue, otherwise, a party MAY continue to unnecessarily exploit, control and exhibit contradictions if unchecked. Caution should be taken to avoid confronting what or who should not be confronted. Weight the cost-benefit analysis of your actions before you act.
(2) Avoid
After asking yourself a series of questions consider whether to confront the issues at stake, or whether to simply avoid the party or the issue bringing the conflict for peace to reign. Avoidance may be the best way out and it could also be a time bomb as certain issues may require confrontation to resolve. Weigh the cost-benefit analysis of your actions before you act.
(3) Manage
There are issues of life or sources of conflict that confrontation and avoidance will not be the best solution. The way forward may be to manage the person or conflicting situations. For instance, there are some foundational issues or innate attitudes of certain people or corporate behaviour that are beyond confrontation and avoidance. There are situations we do not have any other option than to manage close associates, siblings, relatives, spouse, friends and fiends, co-workers, brethren, co-travellers and others we may be having a short or time-bound relationship with, while in other situations, our association maybe for a long time to come. Always remember that if you change the skin of a fox, you cannot change the fact that a fox is a destructive animal.
(4) Acceptance
This is another way of dealing with conflict. This becomes necessary because there are situations or people you cannot change in view of the prevailing situations, the characters, attitudes, behaviours, knowledge, exposures, etc. and the internal and external factors involved. A critical review of the strength and weaknesses, the implications of your actions on the opportunities you may lose and threats in your existence and persistence are some factors that should be considered. Through a critical evaluation, the best option may be to accept wholly or for the time being.dancing, holding, embracing
In the course of acceptance, time is a serious factor. By allowing time to pass or postponing taking action to a later date or time may prove to be a potent solution to a conflicting issue or situation. Mind what you say but simply remain silent. Cede your rights and privileges as time is a great healer. Clear your minds.
(5) God Factor (Divine Resolution)
With reference to the introductory part of this write-up, conflict is part of life. God is the author of life and has solutions to all life problems. Human beings are limited in all things. It’s only God that is all-knowing. Take your issues to God for consolation and divine resolution as human efforts may fail you.
CONCLUSION
You may wish to borrow from my personal motto which is “act well your part, for there the honour lies”.
When I am persistently denied my rights or cannot place the outcome of my expectations from any organization or persons, I console myself with “blessed is the man who never expects, for he is never disappointed”
Long ago, I’ve known that the absence of war does not mean peace. This implies that the root of a conflict must be addressed or parties at conflict must first be willing to resolve their conflicts before a meaningful resolution could take place. Conflicts are not resolved by law or decrees or by biased umpire/parties. This only brings out YES which actually means No. Generally, when the above is prevalent, the ensuing conflicts will be greater than the former because silence or absence of war does not imply peace.

CONFLICT RESOLUTION I have come to conclude that there are two perspectives of understanding life. […]

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