Woodstock Area Job Bank

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Have you ever wondered how someone got to where they are in life? How did they come to live in Vermont? What sparked their interest in a particular field of work? I am constantly wondering how and why people chose the paths that they do. Perhaps it’s a nod to my father’s engineering mind that keeps me deconstructing other people’s lives.

It’s a natural question for me to ask “So tell me, how did you get here?” But it can also be a dangerous question that may reveal more about a person that I was ready to hear. Perhaps the how’s and why’s of their current situation aren’t all that happy. A bad break up, poor physical or mental health, time in prison, family challenges and more can radically change a person’s life path. It can also change the way others view them and put an immediate roadblock in their career path.

I recently listened to a TedTalk by Joe DeLoss, a social entrepreneur and founder of Hot Chicken Takeover, that blew my mind. (If you have a minute to watch it, you really should. Click here.) Joe’s attitude towards this workers is to “judge them by their future, not their past.” That made a lot of sense to me. If we were all  judged solely by the worst thing we’ve ever done – many of us would be in a very different line of work!

I’ll still ask folks, from time to time, how they got to where they are but more often I’ll ask them where they want to go? What do they want to be and why? What excites them? These answers are far more useful than ones dug up from the past. By changing my focus to future potential I’ve put myself in a better position to help people. Give it a try!

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