It can be difficult getting your teenager to get of bed in the morning, never mind encouraging them to write up a CV, apply for jobs and don a uniform every weekend for eight hours of work.
You might be shuddering just at the thought of suggesting the above to them but it’s time to encourage your teen to gain some independence and more importantly earn their own money, over the Christmas period.
It’s so easy to search for jobs these days, sites such as Jobstoday feature reams and reams of pages of vacancies, based upon your search requirements. Simply fill in where you want to work and what industry, then wait for jobs in your area to load on your screen, for your teen to choose from and apply for.
Remember though, you were once their age. How proactive were you when it came to working and doing chores around the house? Let’s face it, it probably wasn’t one of your strong points. Try to recall what encouraged you to get into the world of work, was it the pressure to have money in your pocket, improve career prospects or to simply get out of the house and reduce boredom?
Money is a real incentive for teenagers and as they get older it’s time to stop handing it out. Don’t cut them off completely, simply refuse to pay for their mobile phone contract or new clothes and explain that this is something they now have to find the money for. Nothing will spur them on faster to get cracking on that CV. It will also help them understand just how expensive certain items can be and help them to appreciate what they own a little more.
- Help & Guidance
Offer help and guidance, many teens will look at a CV template (you can find some great teenager-orientated templates online) and have no idea where to start – simply because they have no experience in the working world so believe that they have nothing to offer.Encourage them to try and put togetherthe CVon their own firstand always praise what they come up with. Suggest what skills you feel they have that an employer would look for and always be complimentary, teenagers respond better with encouragement and flattery than nagging and criticism.
- Helping others
It’s important to note that teenagers don’t usually feel that helping you is of any benefit to them, so it’s probably best you don’t use this as an incentive. Instead encourage them to earn money so they can buy presents for family members. Obviously don’t include second cousins in the list but encouraging them to buy a small gift for Mum, Dad and siblings might make them think about looking for work. They will feel a sense of pride from earning the money, buying the gifts and seeing every one’s reaction on the day as they unwrap.
- Offer to help
Offer to pick them up from work, but encourage them to use public transport or walk to get there. Knowing that there will always be someone there to collect them and take them home after a long day could be the difference between making an excuse not to work and not. Also tell them to only work once a week, so their studies aren’t affected and not to take evening shifts so they can still enjoy time with their friends. They’ll think you’re letting them have it a little easier, so will be more inclined to get out there and look for work.
- Future career
Ask them what industry they want to work in when they leave school, explain that a part time job can help when it comes to University applications and in turn full time work, once they have completed their degree or training.
If possible, look for work that ties in with the profession they want to build a career in, later in life. For example if they want to work in teaching then a job at a supermarket crèche on a Saturday (these will be pretty full over the Christmas period) or in a children’s play-activity centre, can help them gain experience working with kids and also help them decide if it is a profession they would want to work in full time. Teenagers might have a clear idea of what they want to do, but once they try their hand might quickly change their minds.
It might start off slowly, and with plenty of grumbling, but keep up your encouragement and reasoning and your teen will soon come round. The joy of the festive season could also help, as they get in the spirit of things and want to be a part of it all.