Career Center: Parents: Family Member Checklist

Family Member Checklist

When thinking about ways you can help your student with career development, consider these questions:


  • Am I allowing my family member the freedom to have new experiences?
  • Do I encourage the exploration of new ideas, experiences, occupations without being pushy?
  • Am I willing to tolerate ideas and values which are different from my own?
  • Do I really listen to what my family member tells me?
  • Am I positive and supportive when my family member makes a poor decision or fails?


  • Do I talk openly and honestly about my current job, including both the pros and cons?
  • Am I willing to discuss my own career development history?
  • Do I tell my family member about various occupations?
  • Do I encourage my family member to find out about occupations of interest, referring him/her to appropriate resources?

Personal Insights

  • Do I help my family member to objectively look at his/her strengths and weaknesses and suggest how they might relate to various career areas?
  • Do I compliment my family member on his/her good points and accomplishments?
  • Do I help my family member identify occupations that he/she would be good at?


  • Am I willing to refer my family member to friends/acquaintances who might discuss their occupations with him/her?
  • Am I willing to actively help my family member find a summer/part-time/volunteer job that will help him/her explore a potential career field?
  • Would I be willing to allow my family member to use my personal/professional contacts to find employment after graduation?


  • Do I encourage activities that promote career development, while not emphasizing what has not been done?
  • Am I willing to assist my family member in setting reasonable goals without insisting that my expectations be met?
  • Do I ask questions that will encourage my family member's further career information-seeking behavior?

The Family Member Checklist above is courtesy of and was retrieved from the Brandeis University web site. Retrieved May 17, 2010

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