The longer a person experiences unemployment, the deeper the impact is on their overall health and wellbeing.
According to the Department of Education, Skills and Training, the time job seekers spend unsuccessfully looking for work can wear down an individuals’ confidence and reduce their motivation to search for work, further compounding the existing barriers to employment.
“Long-term joblessness can therefore have scarring effects, resulting in a greater chance of future periods of unemployment, lower lifetime earnings and poorer physical and mental health.”
Before your clients can launch into finding a job, they need to develop three psychological work readiness skills proven to help them be more job-ready.
Confidence, despite being a valuable personality attribute, is not easy to define. It is often described simply as a person's belief in oneself (Bénabou & Tirole, 2002). The Psychology Dictionary Online defines self-confidence as an individual's trust in their own abilities, capacities, and judgments, or belief that they can successfully face day to day challenges and demands.
Self-confidence is similar to self-esteem and self-efficacy, and when it comes to finding employment, these traits are considered very important. Morris Rosenberg's research on self-esteem demonstrates how valuable a person's sense of self-worth is when building confidence.
For job seekers, often, these traits are quite low, and it can be challenging for them to see themselves in a positive light. By giving your clients access to training programs that help them dive into the beliefs they hold about themselves and showing them how to 'flip' unresourceful beliefs, they can begin to see potential where they couldn't before. Discovering values, strengths, and personal qualities can also help your clients feel that they have plenty to offer, making them more employable.
Rejections, or even not receiving any feedback, make the job searching experience very discouraging and de-energising for your clients. Their level of resilience around handling these situations can erode the longer it continues. Resilience is defined as "the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties" or the "ability to become strong, healthy or successful again after something bad happens."
Helping your clients maintain a level of resilience on their journey to employment is essential. By providing them with access to resources, training and tools, they will find ways to overcome the challenges, and by encouraging a growth mindset, they will be more flexible and agile in their mission to achieve their goals.
To be motivated means to be moved into action. As a general rule, people are motivated by one of two things – avoiding pain or gaining pleasure. Simply put, your clients will be motivated to change based on whether they seek to feel good or avoid feeling bad. Motivation can be extrinsic or intrinsic (Deci & Ryan, 1985). Mindset also plays a large part in keeping people motivated – a growth mindset will continue to look for opportunities to move forward, whereas a fixed mindset believes nothing can be changed or gained.
If you can help your clients learn more about their values and beliefs, you will have the ability to motivate them to move towards the things they do want or away from the things they don't want.
Work readiness training that boosts job seeker wellbeing
The Bounce Program was featured in a 2019 trial project to determine if a job seeker’s psychological work readiness could be improved. The outcomes of the trial revealed that training that focuses on wellbeing and develops specific psychological skills or ‘soft skills’ helps job seekers feel more job-ready.
Find out how the Bounce Program can help your clients boost their wellbeing and feel ready to work.