The Great Shift: How Career Practitioners Can Support Their Clients

Two one-way street signs representing The Great Shift

“The Great Resignation” — also known as “The Big Quit” — has become a well-known phrase over the last year. After working from home for months and having time for self-reflection, many employees are choosing to quit due to a desire to realign their values, goals, needs, and purpose with their careers. At the same time, many hard-hit entrepreneurs and self-employed workers are choosing to change course and secure formal employment. In reality, the highly-publicized trend in resignations is just part of the story. Perhaps the new landscape of the labour market more accurately represents a great shift.

“Occupations have always evolved and they will continue to change to meet the needs of the world we live in. Lately, we are hearing a lot about “The Great Resignation,” but it’s much more than that. People are moving from existing roles to new ones that fit with their own values and lifestyles, and meet the needs of our current economic, political, and social environment. It might be more appropriate to call this movement “The Great Shift.”

Sharon Graham

The Great Resignation Will Likely Continue

In 2022, the trend of quitting may accelerate across Canada. According to a McKinsey survey, over 50% of employers, in several countries including Canada, are experiencing turnover at an unprecedented rate. And, 36% of people have resigned without having a new job on the horizon!

The pandemic created a domino effect whereby many people started reevaluating and reprioritizing their values and lifestyles, pre and post pandemic. While working from home presents some challenges, people learned they were able to pursue a lifestyle they did not have access to when they were working in a distant physical location like an office. The rise of remote work or asynchronous forms of work meant often shorter — or even non-existent — commutes and more flexibility. Yet, juggling virtual learning for children and making tough family decisions while trying to mentally and emotionally manage the ever-changing news related to the pandemic can often lead to burnout.

The Self-Employment Conundrum Factors Into The Great Shift, Too

Although Canada has lost nearly three million jobs since the start of the pandemic, we have made only a partial recovery. In 2020, the self-employed were hit the hardest. Many small businesses were forced to reassess their entire business strategy and livelihood. According to this article from CBC, the pandemic has resulted in a decline from nearly 2.9 million self-employed individuals in 2020 to just over 2.6 million at the end of 2021.

Many self-employed entrepreneurs faced debt and, without financial support or an income stream, had no option but to close their businesses. This trend has opened the door for new entrepreneurs to drive innovation while former entrepreneurs have chosen to enter more traditional corporate and steady-paying jobs.

Employers Are Also Major Players in The Great Shift

Employers report that they are encountering difficulty filling open positions. Many are challenged to manage their operations with numerous staffing shortages. According to the World Economic Forum, retail, hospitality, food service, and other sectors are seeing high numbers of resignations. The state of the healthcare industry has been well publicized as thousands of healthcare professionals are feeling overwhelmed with work and/or mentally affected by wellness concerns. Employers are being forced to change their business models, organizational culture, recruitment/retention practices, and work methods in order to attract and retain employees. At least for the time being, employees appear to have gained an upper hand in the market and employers are becoming creative and flexible in response.

Even with these multiple factors and unpredictable, external forces impacting our lives and our work, as career practitioners, we can support jobseekers to navigate “The Great Shift.”

Encourage Clients to Take a Step Back and Reevaluate Priorities

Unhappy in their current situations, our clients may feel there are no readily available solutions and the light at the end of the tunnel seems dim. Quitting is sometimes the answer, but not always.

Rather than quitting, our clients should be encouraged to pause, step back, and truly reflect on their future path, viewing it from all angles. This strategy involves taking an in-depth look at labour market information, trends, shifts, opportunities, and risks before making impulsive decisions.

As career practitioners, here are five strategies to support clients through “The Great Shift.”

  • Help clients to understand their uniqueness. Support clients in really getting to know themselves and to clearly define their interests, their passion and purpose, strengths, and values.
  • Use a storytelling approach. Career storytelling and use of metaphor can spark the conversation and clarify clients’ goals, dreams, values, and priorities.
  • Explore the possibilities. Help your clients to be spontaneous and uncover what opportunities are out there in alignment with changing roles and industries.
  • Champion your clients to enhance their marketable skills. Motivate your clients to reach beyond their comfort zone, challenge themselves, and learn high-level skills. For example, technological skills, complex problem solving, and higher-level creativity.
  • Help your clients to build their professional network. Assist your clients in making appropriate connections, using LinkedIn resources, or finding networking groups, which can enhance career development and growth.

Apply Neuro-Linguistic Programming Techniques for Better Decision-Making

NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) can guide your clients in testing out their decision-making through different levels to determine the effectiveness of their choices.

Here are nine steps to help in evaluating a career shift decision using NLP practices:

  1. Discover: Obtain high-quality, accurate information, both qualitatively and quantitatively. Gather research and 360-degree feedback from various stakeholders.
  2. Assess Logic, Emotion, and Intuition: What are the pluses about the decision from a logical perspective, emotional perspective, and intuitive perspective? Assign a score between 0 and 10 for each; 0 means not carrying out the decision to quit, where 10 means you would definitely execute the decision.
  3. Analyze: Add up the 3 scores to arrive at the total score. Then analyze the individual perspectives and final result. What is the best decision?
  4. Stop, Look, and Listen: Ask yourself “what do you have” and “what do you need”? This step will confirm exactly what you need to do at the present.
  5. Visualize: If the decision still reflects a sound idea, play a mental movie of carrying the decision out until you achieve optimal results. Tune into your visual, auditory, and kinesthetic senses to get the bigger picture. What do you see, hear, and feel?
  6. Appraise the Impact: Now consider the impact on yourself, the people and keys stakeholders around you, the environment, and the planet. Is it positive, negative, or neutral?
  7. Evaluate: Assess the risks or the disadvantages of moving forward with this shift. Can you reduce the risk without reducing the benefits? What are the trade-offs?
  8. Future Pace: Future pace the first action via mental imagery to propel you forward and then complete a timeline of achieving the best desired result. What does the first step look like? See yourself carrying out this action in the best emotional state to achieve an optimal result. Then, envision yourself as an independent person and coach yourself to do it better, which shifts perception.
  9. Finish: Finish the timeline that includes the remaining steps. If you are making a sound decision, then drive your vision, fulfill your mission, and monitor your progress.

To learn more tactics and strategies to help clients navigate “The Great Shift”, enrol in CPC courses or work towards your certifications. Stay updated with the latest trends and support your clients in making life-changing decisions.

Lori Jazvac is a passionate, award-winning Master Certified Résumé Strategist and Certified Employment Strategist through Career Professionals of Canada. As a multi-certified Master Résumé Writer and Certified Career Transition Coach, she specializes in helping clients navigate challenging career transitions. In 2013, an empowering vision inspired Lori to launch Creative Horizons Communications, a holistic career services firm where she virtually supports jobseekers around the globe to embrace their next career milestone. In her spare time, Lori enjoys dance, blogging, watching comedies and reality shows, yoga, and taking long walks in nature.

Conny Lee is a Certified Holistic Narrative Career Practitioner, Online Business Manager for coaches, Certified Career Strategist, Certified Employment Strategist, and Certified Résumé Strategist. She is focused on supporting people to create the career, business, and life they truly desire and love. To learn more, visit Conny’s website at When she isn’t working, Conny enjoys reading, listening, learning anything related to personal development, spending time with her family, and working out.

Photo by Brendan Church on Unsplash

Spread the love
Categories: , ,
Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Great article and especially the point that quitting is not necessarily the answer as the pandemic is still causing a lot of angst in peoples lives. Happy to see that Conny Lee is using Human Design as I’ve recently added it to my program to help clients find more meaning and purpose and honour their inner wisdom with regards to the choices they make in their work, business and/or life.

Hi Lissa! Thank you! I love that you are using HD in your work as it does help us to recognize and appreciate our individuality amongst many other things that you mentioned!