Summer 2018:

Developing Professional Purpose

In this eight-week, experiential workshop/discussion group, you’ll have an opportunity to identify a professional purpose that feels more true to your personality, skills and passions.  Guided by an experienced instructor, you’ll learn theoretical concepts related to purpose through didactic instruction.  But you’ll also have a chance to put these concepts into practice by telling your story as an experiential case presentation, receiving feedback in the process from a group of peers who are wrestling with similar questions.  We’ll engage in a variety of exercises during the in-person sessions designed to help you reflect on who you are in the present as well as how your past life can provide valuable clues about your future.  After each session, there will be brief readings and writing exercises to further the work in between weekly sessions. 

Some of the concepts and topics that we’ll cover over the course of the workshop include: 

·        Ways to mine your past for clues about repeating patterns in your career interests

·        Traps we fall into that render purpose more difficult to identify

·        Loyalties and expectations we all possess that both serve us and bind us

·        How to use the concept of ‘adaptive work’ to think about the activities that provide meaning and purpose

·        Things we may be holding on to in our professional and personal lives that may be getting in our way

·        How to define a more personal vision of success that is less dependent on how others perceive us

·        How to run small experiments in doing something new or different

 

 

More about the Discussion Group Format

Leveraging the Intersection of Group Process and Narrative Writing

When we're considering new directions, we often engage in lots of mental chatter, thinking about and testing new ideas in our mind.  Sometimes we bounce these ideas off trusted friends.  But there is value to a more consistent, structured way of learning about our options.  In this discussion group series, you'll have the opportunity each week to discuss your thoughts about professional purpose or career change and get feedback from an instructor as well as from peers who are in similar situations.  

The discussion group makes use of two primary mechanisms of change:

1. Group Process: By having conversations and bouncing ideas off of peers and in the presence of an experienced instructor, you'll identify new ways of thinking about old dilemmas.  And you'll find ways to reformulate how your values and your personality impact the career that will be fulfilling to you.

2.  Narrative Writing:  Your instructor will assign you writing prompts in between discussion groups as well as an optional cumulative narrative statement (a personal statement of sorts) describing your career purpose and direction.  You'll have the chance to reflect in writing, focusing your mind on key questions as you draft and redraft written statements while receiving feedback from your instructor.   

Discussion groups are weekly, 2-hour evening meetings.  Each week, there will be a different topic or theme.  Your instructor will provide a brief presentation, which will be followed by time to discuss the theme as well as other related career issues that are coming up for the group that week.  Afterwards, the session will also provide the opportunity for one of the group members to present a personal case of pursuing career purpose and receive feedback from the rest of the group as well as the instructor in a structured environment.
 



Frequently Asked Questions:

1.  What is the cost of the discussion group?
The cost of the eight session discussion group is $350.  Attendance at all eight sessions is required, please discuss with your instructor in advance if there are issues attending on all scheduled dates.

2.  How large is the discussion group?
The size of the discussion group is capped at 12 so that there is ample opportunity for every attendee to participate at each meeting.

3.  Do I need to attend weekly?  
Yes, attendance at each session is required. 

4.  Will there be homework?
Yes, there are weekly reading and brief writing assignments that help you reflect on what you've learned during the session and think about your future career purpose.