Women Achieving New Directions Services
Career Upgrading Workshops
PUMPING UP: Do you need to find time to relax, reflect and rejuvenate yourself? You’ve come to the right place! Meet the WAND team and be introduced to the WAND philosophy of career exploration and career advancement. Expand your professional network and your knowledge of community resources. Begin the journey of self-awareness and understanding that will lead to realizing your career and life dreams.
GOAL SETTING: Learn to master the art of goal setting. Discover how to turn your dreams into step- by- step goals that create a blueprint for success.
SALARY NEGOTIATION/BUDGETING: You will learn the secrets of salary negotiations. Learn to set a salary range from which you will start your negotiations and learn to value benefits as part of your compensation package. From the job application to the acceptance letter, you will be competent in identifying a good opportunity for negotiation. Also learn how determine and live within your budget.
SKILLS ASSESSMENT: Making sense out of your career skills tests. Learn more about your unique skills and interests, and how these can help you decide what careers to pursue. Explore how your personality type can influence your career choices and learn how style differences affect your interactions with co-workers.
DOING THE WRITE THING, THE RIGHT WAY: Do you struggle with putting who you are, what you are worth and what you want into words? Learn how to write the cover letter, resume and thank you letter as self-marketing tools. Sell yourself to potential employers and be seen as a rising star.
ACE THE INTERVIEW: Do you get sweaty palms when it comes to interviews and asking for what you are worth? You are not alone. With practice you can become good at both interviewing and negotiating for more money. Get answers to difficult interview questions. Learn how to manage your nerves. Practice with mock interviewers!
OFFICE POLITICS: Learn 10 myths about work that affect your interactions with co-workers and get in your way for advancement opportunities. Explore perceptions of “being rational,” judging others on their behaviors, expectations from management, dress codes, dealing with change at work and other themes. Share your own work experience and receive feedback on how to effectively deal with the challenges posed by people and policies.
Networking Connection Groups
These monthly groups provide opportunities to network with other participants and professionals and support each other in their job search. Mentors, women who have already advanced in their careers, provide information on job related topics such communication style, work place expectations, effective balance of home and work issues, parenting, dressing for success and time and money management.
One-to-One Customized Career Counseling
Individual vocational counseling is available for program participants as a supplement to other program services. One-to-one help is provided for career planning, goal setting, job search and job development. These sessions can be provided at WAND offices, off-site or by phone.
Mentors are professional career women who bring strong insight into job requirements and advancement, positive workplace role models and regular skill building connections. Mentors provide professional network contacts, share information about different work cultures and their own career development process. They also provide information about the company that they work for and their field of employment, refer participants to other contacts for informational interviews or employment opportunities, and conduct mock interviews with participants to assist them in improving their interviewing skills and self-confidence.
Mentor activities include:
• Professional Career Guidance Workshops
• The Connection (a monthly evening networking session)
• Family events including Family Fun and Winter Celebration
• Participant/Mentor Recognition Conference
• One-to-one mentoring
• Mini Job Fair
WAND services have been specifically developed with the working, single mom in mind. Programming has been organized to make it possible for the woman who has sole responsibility to support the family and parent the children to take action and move forward in her work life. With this in mind WAND provides:
- Light meals at workshops and events for mothers and their children
- On-site childcare for workshops
- Services at convenient times – evenings and weekends.
- Family Fun events (described below)
Family Fun: Events engage program participant families in interactive sessions designed to move children to a greater awareness and understanding of their mothers’ career responsibilities as well as their own work world options. Activities also focus on fun ways to share family stories, set goals and achieve work/life balance. All sessions include light meals and small gifts for the children. While new services are always being developed, examples of these activities and events include:
- Jobs in the World of Work: A Career Panel featured five mentors from the financial industry, insurance, education, government and non-profit sectors. Children heard how these women chose their career paths, training they needed and jobs they held. The mothers and children shared their career goals with the group and received encouragement and suggestions on ways to achieve them.
- Treasure Mapping: WAND participants and their children worked in family units to create a vision of their family goals. This allowed each family member a chance to talk about what they wanted to see happen for their family and their mom’s career. Mothers were able to talk to children about how work/career is an important tool to achieve these goals. Families then put this map in a prominent place in their home to remind them of their dreams.
- Healthy Eating/Healthy Hearts: Two community health experts provided an interactive workshop for mothers and children. Material included relevant information on the relationship between nutrition and health in general as well as specifically heart health.
- SMILE – Family Dental Care
- Organize for School: WAND participants and their children make a plan for a smooth transition from summer time to school time. Children are engaged in making this happen and receive school supplies.
Healthcare Office Specialist Training: This three-month course is designed to prepare individuals for entry-level clerical or customer service positions in the medical field. Coursework includes Microsoft Office, Medical Terminology, Patient Ethics, and Intro to Billing and Coding.
Effective Parenting: This workshop focuses on parenting skills for the working mother. Materials include information on how to relate constructively to a child for optimal growth at each stage of the child’s development.
Glamorize Yourself from the Inside Out: This interactive Personal Effectiveness/Self Esteem workshop is offered to help participants effectively market themselves and be confident of who they are and what they contribute to employers.
Leadership: This workshop is offered through Zonta International, an executive women’s organization that adopted WAND as a two-year project.
The Journey, Immigrants in the American Workplace: WAND has developed a curriculum covering communication in the workplace, goal setting, career advancement and work and family life balance that relates specifically to the adjustments necessary when cultural differences exist. The workshop is facilitated to generate thoughtful conversation as well as including problem-solving activities.
Minneapolis, St. Paul, and the Greater Twin Cities Area of Minnesota