The Challenges Women Still Face in Job Search and How to Overcome Them
MARLEQ: How do you combine addressing social issues and career paths?
Dina Ala'eddin: I intentionally understand that each person has a different story and set of experiences, which shape how he/she respond to the job market. For example, people who take care of their old parents might need to work from home and thus need to have the navigation skills to suit their expertise with a remote job. Even each generation has different perspectives and challenges regarding work, which might shape their career paths. As a coach, I know that the client knows what fits them, but would only need the coaching to unlock a more confident plan on how to navigate the suitable job or even independent business/start-up.
MARLEQ: How does Career Coaching contribute to capacity building and mobilization?
Dina Ala'eddin: I see career coaching as a good tool to build critical thinking and self-awareness skills, which both are really important transferable skills that can be applied in any job type. The approach of coaching will allow the client to think deeper about their career path and how to more effectively interact with each opportunity or challenge.
MARLEQ: Why do you enjoy working with your clients as an Executive Coach?
Dina Ala'eddin: I actually enjoy the process of coaching conversation as I have been always interested in listening to people talking about their work-life, what they do, what they seek to improve, and the challenges they face. As well, I am really happy when I receive a message from clients that they have been hired.
MARLEQ: What are the benefits of career coaching services for job seekers?
Dina Ala'eddin: In the beginning, I would like to stress the fact that a career coaching service is not a 100% guarantee that you will land your dream job. However, it is very useful as it can unleash your potential to describe your own skills, achievements, and capabilities. Furthermore, it might even open additional pathways for you to develop new skills. Therefore, career coaching services can help in growing the client's preparedness for opportunities as he/she will become more confident in navigating the job market and applying with a smart strategy.
MARLEQ: What are the main challenges women still face in search of a job?
Dina Ala'eddin: Unfortunately, there is still an underestimation of women's substantial role in the workplace. I feel astonished when it is still a need to keep talking about gender equity and increasing women leadership in well-known companies and organizations, because if such good initiatives are still needed, then women are still being perceived differently even in our current modern era!
On the other hand, women themselves might not have the awareness about their own worth, especially after employment gaps that most women face during parenting when they decide to get back to the job market.
MARLEQ: How would you advise overcoming these challenges?
Dina Ala'eddin: Firstly, employers should institutionalize fair and objective recruitment that focuses on the competencies, skills, and accomplishments of the applicants only, this can be supported by applying recruitment tools that reduce unconscious gender bias, like coded resumes and pre-interviewing tests.
Secondly, women should overcome the feeling of being defeated or surrender to the feeling that they are victims of any system by bringing added values and impact with more confidence.
MARLEQ: How would you advise young professionals to get the most out of their internship/traineeship/volunteering experiences?
Dina Ala'eddin: Young professionals have to invest smartly in such opportunities and do not let them pass unconsciously. Build networks, observe work dynamics and reflect how you translate certain challenges and successes, and ask the right questions. Please document lessons learned so you know how to align them with your upcoming job. I witnessed directors who started as volunteers at the same organization because they were observers and investors.
MARLEQ: Where do you see yourself professionally in five years?
Dina Ala'eddin: In 5 years, I see myself supporting organizational transformation and development toward institutionalizing ''Workplace Wellbeing'' and a PhD or Master degree holder in Organizational Psychology.
MARLEQ: Can you share with us your favorite motivational quote?
Dina Ala'eddin: ''Keep breaking your heart until it opens.'' - Rumi. This quote resonates with how I approach work opportunities with full boldness, I get rejected, feel down a bit, but keep trusting that God will always show me the other ways, so I keep moving forward. For me, I do not want my career path to be linear as this is against the laws of nature, I perceive the work as a field of self-exploration.
MARLEQ: What are the books you would recommend?
Dina Ala'eddin: If you like to know about real examples of a company that applied the “Less is More” concept, then read ''Rework'' by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, and ''The Fearless organization'' by Amy Edmondson, to know the importance of psychological safety for team high-performance.
''The Essentialist'' by Greg McKeown is my reference toward making an alignment between my personal and professional life, as it is a handy book, full of tips that help you on focusing on the most important things and learn how to identify what is not essential to be engaged in.
One of my favorite spiritual books is ''A New Earth'' by Eckhart Tolle, as it is a good reminder of how to be present and focus on the power of the moment and the now.