Top 10 Career Discussion Topics

  1. Gender – Are there male jobs & female jobs? – A useful debate which can get heated. The statutory guidance states that you must promote equality of opportunity so care must be taken when guiding this debate.
  2. Jobs of the future – What jobs will exist in 5, 10, 20 years that don’t exist now?
  3. What effects are robotic workers having on the job market? Will robots be able to do jobs like journalism & legal work (yes they will, computerised copy writing and contract checking are already a reality) or will automation only affect ‘physical’ jobs?
  4. Transferable skills – what are they and why do we need them? – Useful question to elicit knowledge of transferable skills – you may find this definition useful in order to help your students decide which skills are transferable “Transferable skills are general skills you can use in many jobs. You gain these skills from previous jobs, projects, voluntary work, sport, your home life, hobbies, and interests. They enable you to be adaptable and flexible in case you need to change your job”
  5. What skills & qualities do employers want when they employ a person straight out of school/college/university?
  6. Employers are frequently reported as saying school leavers are not workplace ready. A discussion around what skills are needed and what they are can be structured using the following frequently cited skills:-Understanding of business world; Teamwork; Communication; Negotiation skills; Problem Solving; Leadership; Organisation; Perseverance/motivation; Ability to work under pressure; Confidence
  7. Why do some people try and dissuade people from taking certain jobs? – An ideal opportunity to explore the motivation behind advice from various sources. E.g. university & school leaver recruitment staff. Teachers who have been instructed to recruit for the school 6th  Parents who would like to see their children achieve their parent’s dream etc.
  8. Why do some jobs have more kudos than others? – Is it really all about cash? What makes a job desirable? Does TV portrayal of certain jobs make them seem glamorous?
  9. Can you turn a hobby into a career? – Students may wish to pursue a hobby such as photography or sport as a careers. What considerations might they need to have when doing this? E.g. need to be self-employed; the effect of training 7 days a week on enjoyment of the sport etc.
  10. Can work be fun? What makes work fun? Can it always be fun? What is fun?
  11. How many types of job can I expect to do over my lifetime? – A discussion about career paths. Not just changing jobs but changing types of job and progression.  The role of lifelong learning, retraining, transferable skills.  Using a story about somebody’s career journey is a good prompt for this discussion.
  12. What’s the difference between a job and a career?
  13. Is a job just to pay the bills and a career something you’re interested in?