A Field Guide for Career Practitioners:
Helping Clients Create Their Next Move
This book is for anyone who provides career services to people. You might be a career coach, academic advisor, career counselor, Department of Labor employee, one of the many people who work in our K-12 schools, adult educators, and others.
For years, I have been helping career service providers improve their skills so that the greatest number of people will receive quality career services. This book is a compilation of my best practices with students and clients over the years ranging from the influence of the Happenstance theory, to using card sorts, to simply helping people change their mindset in their career development.
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Jim Peacock’s career spans academic advising, community colleges, universities, and leadership roles in career development professional associations, so he’s well-qualified to tackle the wide range of topics in this book.
With gentle encouragement to reflect on and challenge our current ways of working, Jim explains how, from his own experience, our biases (yes, we all have them) can get in the way of effective counseling. He also discusses the importance of intentionally talking less, in order to help our clients find their own answers within themselves.
Elsewhere, Jim reinforces the importance of networking and self-care, with tips on how to help clients (and ourselves) get better at these essential skills. In particular, Jim identifies the benefits of embracing and teaching mindfulness practices, advice that I believe will resonate with many coaches and other career practitioners.
If you’ve been considering going into private practice, you will naturally want to read what Jim has to say, from the heart, on this topic. Other readers, like myself, will be engaged by Jim’s thoughtful advice on the topic of professional development, and I’m eager to listen to the TED talks and podcasts that he recommends.
The focus of this book is on practical guidance for fellow career professionals, brought to life with illustrations from Jim’s own work, which will inform and inspire readers who are new to the career development profession and also provide even seasoned coaches and counselors with some new suggestions for taking our practice to the next level.
Holistic Career / Life Coach & Consultant
Yes, at some point in the very near future, someone will look your clients up online and most likely they will find your LinkedIn profile. Take the time and effort to follow Jim Peacock’s recommendations, step by step. Your clients only have one chance to make a great first impression and this will help you get them there!
In fact, the entire book will help you help your clients. Jim has a wonderful way of mixing important statistics and stories to emphasize his points.
Job Search and Social Media Strategist
This book represents an exciting new addition to the literature addressing career interventions. It incorporates the most current thinking regarding career development and presents this information in a very accessible and useful way. The use of concepts honoring positive uncertainty, serendipity, career chaos, and hope-action theory offers a foundation from which the most relevant career interventions emerge. This is a real strength for those seeking to provide innovative career strategies.
Another strength of A Field Guide for Career Practitioners: Helping Clients Create Their Next Move resides in Peacock’s thorough coverage of social media as a vehicle for career intervention. It is critical that career practitioners make full use of social media but that they do so in thoughtful, intentional, and effective ways. This book offers strategies that guide practitioners in accomplishing this goal.
Finally, I’m struck by the way in which the author’s passion for his work and for communicating this to fellow practitioners resounds throughout the book. The combination of all of the above results in a resource that readers will find both helpful and enjoyable to read.
President, NCDA (2003-2004; 2018-2019)
Dean and Professor, College of William & Mary
“Excellent! A Field Guide for Career Practitioners: Helping Clients Create Their Next Move is filled with possibility, the “ah ha” moments and enthusiasm. Ten easy and enjoyable chapters provide insights, stories, examples, and questions that compel and guide career coaches as they help their clients move forward with their next career steps. If you really want to help your clients take action in their careers over the upcoming months, read and put into practice what Jim Peacock has to say and assist your clients in doing what he says. Highly recommend.”
— Elizabeth Craig, CCSP. President, ELC Global, LLC,
National award-winning author of Don’t Slurp Your Soup, A Basic Guide to Business Etiquette
2013 Outstanding Career Practitioner Award – National Career Development Association
It was no accident that I discovered Jim Peacock. In looking for quality, affordable professional development for myself and for the Wisconsin Career Development Association I had the luck to be introduced to Jim’s work. I’ve had the opportunity to learn from Jim both in person and online. His presentations and classes always contain thoughtful, relevant content.
Jim does a fabulous job facilitating connections between participants whether face-to-face or at a distance. I use exercises and concepts learned from Jim with clients seeking career change. I’ve known Jim for over eight years and will continue to seek out his workshops for my own professional growth and recommend him to others in the career development field.
Moira G. Kelley
Senior counselor/Communications coordinator
UW-Madison Division of Continuing Studies
“I have known Jim Peacock for over a decade and have worked with him in professional associations, taken his online seminars, and participated in his workshops. I truly believe he is one of the best career development professionals in the country. Jim is a consummate colleague and extremely passionate about helping further the skills and knowledge of his fellow colleagues through his workshops and online seminars. He is one of my go to resources when I have questions that I need to answer or learn techniques to help my clients more effectively.”
James Westhoff, M.Ed.,
CCC (Certified Career Counselor)
Director, Career Services Husson University
Jim introduced and trained me in the Motivated Skills Card Sort, and I continue to use this assessment in my work with students. He provides thorough and enthusiast training, and I was immediately sold on this assessment after completing the training. I use it regularly in my work as a career counselor and coach and have found it to be a very valuable tool in working with students. Jim is delightful to work with, and clearly is working his magic as a career professional.
Renée Beaupré White,
Job and Career Coach
At some point theory for career development needs to be put to practice. No one is a better suited guide than Jim to show clear, easy, and accessible ways for one to jump from “career philosopher” to “career practitioner” and begin helping clients immediately. I met Jim a few years in my career and I am glad that I did. As a co-worker and CDF instructor, Jim taught me how to become self-sufficient in developing new techniques and strategies for working with the wide variety of students I see. Because of my experiences working with Jim, I feel prepared- and eager- to tackle new challenges with clients because I have a trail map of strategies that anyone can navigate. WARNING: Jim’s enthusiasm for this kind of work is contagious. If you catch the bug, you may display the symptoms of an expert practitioner for the rest of your life.
Career Services at Columbus College of Art & Design
Jim Peacock has become iconic for offering practical strategies to deliver career development services. He challenges assumptions and promotes theoretical models and approaches his work with compassion and wisdom. As an NCDA colleague, I have observed Jim’s capacity to captivate an audience with his engaging teaching and insightful techniques.
Dr. Sharon Givens,
Director of Visions Counseling
and Career Center LLC NCDA Board of
Directors-Trustee for Private Practice,
Business/Industry & Agencies
When Jim Peacock speaks…listen! He’s got the pulse of career changers, tapped into thought leaders nationwide, listens to clients and career practitioners deeply, and translates and makes meaning like few others. Jim’s ability to articulate what’s not said or written about career development pushes my practice ahead. With years of direct practice experience, Jim’s insights clears the air, filters the noise, and offers wise structure to career coaching.
Rich Feller Ph.D,
Former NCDA President (2012-13),
Professor, Entrepreneur, and Consultant
Jim Peacock is one of the first people I recommend when someone I know is in need of career help. He strikes a nice balance of support and challenge, inspiration and practicality. As a leader in our field, he shares his strengths and skills with peers to raise the level of practice across the profession. I have had the privilege of seeing him work in various settings across various platforms and am amazed by how his humor, genuine caring, and passion for helping others thrive shines through.
Every time we have interacted or I’ve read his work, I always come away with a new way of thinking about things or new things to try with clients. I cannot recommend Jim more highly!
Lisa Severy, Director of Career Services,
University of Colorado Boulder and former
NCDA president (2013-2014)
Jim Peacock brings passion and knowledge to the field of career development. As a highly skilled practitioner and trainer, he truly understands clients and their needs. As a seasoned presenter and trainer, Jim consistently develops materials meaningful to practitioners. His work is always on topic, high quality, and timely!
Jim’s work in numerous settings with a diverse client base and leadership roles in career development associations also speaks to his reputation and service. He has also received recognition for his work from the National Career Development Association and National Academic Advising Association.
It is my pleasure to recommend A Field Guide for Career Practitioners to you!
Dr. Constance J. Pritchard
President, The Pritchard Group
NCDA Fellow, Master Trainer, and Instructor
To advise private clients, students and post grads, and job seekers who attend public career centers, you need to be well versed in job-search tactics. Jim Peacock falls under this category. I’ve known Jim for more than six years, having connected with him on LinkedIn, and I can say with certainty that Jim has the credentials and expertise to teach career practitioners at any level.
Whether it is his online career training or individual counseling, Jim is at the top of the career development industry. I had the pleasure of taking one of Jim’s online seminars and found it thought-provoking and valuable. I’ve also benefited from his tutelage in leading a LinkedIn class he offers his clients. A Field Guide for Career Practitioners: Helping Clients Create Their Next Move is a must read for anyone who is in the business of advising career practitioners at any level.
Bob McIntosh Career Strategist,
MassHire Lowell Career Center
Jim Peacock is one of the most highly respected career services professionals in the United States. Jim is a nationally known career development expert, a prolific career blog writer, and an excellent instructor nationally certified by the National Career Development Association.
Jim is a true thought leader; his career advice is rooted in common sense and reality, not vague generalities based on the prevailing conventional wisdom. There are so many “career experts” dispensing advice, but having worked closely with Jim and having taken his course which led me to my Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) credential, I know for sure he is a leader and an expert in the career advising field.
Rich Grant, GCDF
Remote career advisor for an online university
Former president of the Maine College Career Consortium
Jim Peacock is passionate about helping career practitioners develop and hone their skills. He is on top of trends in the career industry and has a knack for converting that knowledge into timely webinars and workshops to disseminate his insights to hardworking colleagues. This Field Guide for Career Practitioners brings all that passion and knowledge together in one easy-to-use tool for the benefit of busy career coaches, counselors and facilitators everywhere.
Karen James Chopra,
Career Counselor, LPC, CCC, NCC,