From the time we were still very young, people have asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Our answers probably have changed several times over the years, but the older and more serious we became, perhaps the more difficult it was to reply.
Most people base their vocational choice on what they enjoy doing, what they are good at, and often, what is financially rewarding.
Dan Meyers leads Rise’s team of vocational evaluators – Shannon Wagner, Annah Gruber, and Christel Pederson – in assisting people to learn more about their own work potential and then make plans to realize their goals.
Rise offers customized, one-on-one evaluations in community businesses in several career fields. Depending on the individual’s specific needs and interests, people can choose to have vocational assessments in retail, clerical, reception, production / manufacturing, data entry, food services, activities (child care, senior care), custodial, and customer service.
“We have developed some great partnerships with area businesses and really appreciate their willingness to let us conduct assessments in their workplace,” said Dan.
“This arrangement enables evaluators to put together the most comprehensive assessment possible. They are able to address the person’s general work skills and behaviors as well as the specific job skills and physical demands required for a particular type of work to determine if it is a good fit.”
Evaluations are typically conducted in four-hour shifts and last between one and three months; evaluees are paid minimum wage.
Some of the businesses who allow evaluations to be conducted in their workplace include:
• Global Health Ministries, Fridley (production, janitorial, clerical warehouse, data entry)
• Walgreens,multiple metro stores (stocking, janitorial, retail)
• The Farmstead Presbyterian Homes, Anoka (dietary, clerical, janitorial, and activities)
• Broadway Pizza, Champlin (food prep, janitorial, dishwashing)
• Anoka Historical Society (data entry, clerical)
“Employers’ support in this evaluation process is tremendously valuable to us as we work to gather as much information about the person so he or she can make the best choices in career planning,” said Shannon.
“We rely on and really appreciate their observations, constructive feedback, and input as to how the person performs in the workplace. This information is critical to helping us then provide a complete and comprehensive assessment report.”
Erika Johnson, owner of Broadway Pizza in Champlin, has opened her restaurant doors to Rise for evaluations for the past six years.
“I want Broadway Pizza to be known as a community business and feel strongly about being involved however and whenever we can,” said Erika. “It’s important to give back, too.”
Christel says that Erika and her kitchen and wait staffs are “awesome — friendly, accommodating, welcoming and make my job so much easier.”
“Our bottom line is to help each person meet his or her own personal measure of success in the workplace,” Christel added. “It’s great when people get into an actual work environment to try out different kinds of jobs and see what they’re good at and enjoy doing. It’s an exciting part of the journey to finding one’s career path.”