"The key to a happy and fulfilling future is knowing yourself. This self-knowledge is the most important component of finding the right career,"
— Richard Nelson Bolles, Best Selling Author
No one chooses to attend law school with the expectation that they will eventually land in a job that will make them unhappy. Similarly, no one comes to law school to work in a setting that doesn’t allow them to express the very things that attracted them to law school in the first place. But if you can’t articulate your preferences, you are missing a vital opportunity to take charge of your own career. It’s a well-known, but somewhat vague directive that successful career planning begins with self-awareness. Professional self-awareness is a lifelong process, but begins by considering four key questions: Who am I? What do I want to do? Where do I want to do it? Why do I want to do it? The answers to these fundamental questions help provide students and job seekers alike with the foundation to create a personal strategy for career exploration. Here at Georgetown, we suggest that students should commit to a process of systematic self- assessment including the 1L Search Before the Search Series and continuing throughout law school. Self-assessment can help you identify what drives you, what you are interested in, what you are good at and what motivates you. It can help you to identify whether you prefer certain environments over others and most important of all, will be the foundation for a well thought out career plan.
The self-directed assessments we recommend are listed below. While there are many popular career assessments that require in-depth and lengthy interpretation by a trained counselor, there are also some basic exercises that can help you to answer and apply the key questions of self-awareness. When you are ready (and if you are on this page, you probably are), please complete the following three assessments and summary profile and make an appointment with a counselor in OCS or OPICS to sort through your results and use your answers as a blueprint for your individual career development plan.
Individual Development Plan Assessments:
What motivates and drives me?
What am I good at? Which tasks do I prefer? Which do I shy away from?
What do I find most compelling? What will sustain me? Where do I want to work? With whom do I want to work?
Bring your summary to career counseling appointments to use as a springboard for your discussion with your counselor.
Watch this video for tips on goal-setting.