Join Us Tuesday, November 28, 2017

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3rd Annual Career Development Symposium

Fuel your work life and IGNITE YOUR CAREER. City employees who are seeking to feed their professional careers with positive energy that could lead to true accomplishments are invited to attend the 3rd Annual Career Development Symposium.

The Career Development Symposium is an annual open-house training event for City employees, held in collaboration with our strategic partners. Every year, this event is organized to assist you on the road to career success by providing career tools, academic resources and professional development opportunities that will support the achievement of future career goals. You will gain access to workshops facilitated by career professionals and career counseling provided by our partnering educational institutions. The one-day event is intended to expose you to information that will incite career readiness, encourage career planning and provide educational resources to support your future goals with the City.

You should attend the Symposium if you are seeking to:

  • Acquire a first-time bachelor or post-graduate degree for professional development

  • Build your professional brand using resources, such as resumes, interviews and job search techniques

  • Obtain complimentary career counseling support to explore your future educational goals, career objectives and job interests

  • Expand your internal training opportunities to enhance your professional qualifications

  • Achieve more effective utilization of your skills and capabilities within your leadership role

  • Enhance your networking opportunities through relationship building and knowledge sharing

  • Evaluate your career goals to effectively plan, navigate and transition into careers of interests using concepts, strategies and tools

Symposium Workshop Line-Up

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Symposium Workshop Descriptions

Leadership 101

Leadership isn't a job title, it is an action. It is developing the perspective, skills and personal style to get results that matter. Individuals, whether seasoned or just growing into their role, often lead project teams. Do you want to be the leader who can influence team members and be part of the future pipeline? Then this class is for you. After completing this workshop, each leader will be able to:

  • Recognize and display good leadership behaviors by defining the qualities and strengths of effective leaders while building trust and confidence with employees

  • Articulate the essential elements of leadership and the behaviors that negatively affect one's ability

  • Examine the impact that effective leadership has on building teamwork, decision-making and crisis management

Networking for Success

Effective networking is an act that anyone can master provided its key components and strategies are well understood. This workshop will provide participants with effective business networking strategies to make connections and form relationships in familiar and unfamiliar environments. Also, it delves into the do’s and don’ts of successful networking and the game plan to take advantage of golden opportunities that can make you rub shoulders with the movers and shakers of the business community, seal the deal, access hard-to-get business leads, or land the dream job. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Plan ahead for networking events
  • Craft an effective “elevator speech”––the pat and ever-ready answer to the question, “What do you do?”
  • Identify opportunities to form meaningful relationships that can enhance their career

High-Impact Resumes and Cover Letters

This interactive workshop covers creating effective resumes. Participants will receive tips on resume development and learn how to present personal qualifications, such as educational background, work experience, skills and strengths, in a well-organized format. This workshop will also provide tips on preparing an effective cover letter that demonstrates your personality, characteristics and strengths. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Present their skills and qualifications, including educational background, work experience and extracurricular activities
  • Prepare an effective cover letter that highlights their personality, characteristics and strengths

Career Enrichment: Fine Tune Your Career Profile

Many employees face a multitude of challenges in the fast-moving, unforgiving occupational climate that does not reward stagnation. To move ahead, employees need to assess their current career status and determine the steps to take in their quest for a smooth-sailing career journey. Also, they need to identify learning opportunities that will further advance their career goals on an on-going basis. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Assess their current career status
  • Map out a meaningful plan
  • Recognize the obstacles that hinder career growth
  • Come up with specific steps to take in an effort to improve their career profile
  • Identify and take advantage of learning opportunities that will further advance their career goals on an on-going basis

Job Search Strategies

This informational workshop will help employees learn the most effective techniques and best practices in applying for positions within the City, completing the employment application and answering supplemental questions. Participants will also receive a preview of current job opportunities within the City. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Discover the techniques used in finding a job in a competitive job market
  • Effectively apply for positions within the City using the employment application and supplemental questions

Career Assessment and Readiness Exploration

This workshop provides participants with a brief, but relevant experience that will allow them to explore and assess their strengths, interests and affinities as they relate to deciding upon a career choice. Participants will have an opportunity to take the Holland Code Assessment, which is intended to guide them towards a career where they will find satisfaction and happiness, based on their personality type. The Holland Codes or the Holland Occupational Themes (RIASEC) identify personal strengths, interests and affinities relevant to work. The assessment identifies six personality types and work environments, and purports that the closer the match of personality to a job, the greater the job satisfaction. After completing this workshop, each participant will:

  • Know their “code” based on the Holland Code Assessment
  • Be able to recall 5 essential steps in the career planning and exploration process

Are You on the Right Path?

Are you where you want to be professionally? Have you reached a fork in the road and can’t make a career decision? Do you have a career path? This session will assist you in learning how to manage your career through self-evaluation of your talents, abilities and interests. The focus will be on providing you with tools, tips and techniques for reflection, planning and goal-setting. Through the use of group discussion, this workshop will also explore ways to overcome obstacles to career fulfillment. After completing this workshop, each participant will be able to:

  • Discover their interests
  • Discuss, examine and apply their skills effectively
  • Identify their Personality Preference and Interpersonal Needs (PPIN)
  • Draft and make a career plan

Managing Your Professional Image and Building a Personal Brand

Professional image is not just about doing good work, it also involves presenting yourself with poise, maturity and good business etiquette. A positive professional image is essential to a successful career, no matter your age or field. Whether you are looking for a job, starting a new job, or a seasoned workplace veteran, it's a good idea to learn or review the basics of developing a positive professional image. This session will equip professionals at any level with the right tools and information to sharpen their image. This session also introduces participants to the key elements and techniques associated with projecting a professional image in the workplace. After completing this workshop, each participant will be able to:

  • Assess their own professional image to develop a personal action plan
  • Understand personal branding and why it is critical to their professional career
  • Distinguish between the most common standards of dress
  • Recognize behaviors beyond clothing choices that contribute to positive self-image

Powerful Interviewing

This activity-filled workshop helps participants to successfully master the tough-to-answer questions asked during a job interview. Participants will also partake in a mock interview and receive professional feedback on their performance. Emphasis is placed on pre-interview preparation, anticipating and interpreting behavioral-based questions, describing appropriate conduct and dress code, and performing necessary interview follow-up activities. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Anticipate and interpret behavioral-based questions
  • Describe appropriate conduct and dress
  • Test their interview skills with someone who isn’t evaluating them for an actual job
  • Perform necessary interview follow-up activities

You're In Charge, Now What?

This workshop examines and discusses an eight-step plan for newly promoted supervisors to use in order to become successful and effective leaders. After completing this workshop, each participant will learn:

  • How to plan their first 100 days in a new leadership position
  • How to evaluate the members of their management team
  • How to change their organization’s culture
  • The common pitfalls incoming leaders face
  • How to lead by example

Career Planning and Development Strategies

The workshop provides participants with the necessary tools and development strategies for creating their own career plan. After completing this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Identify and analyze their strengths, passions, talents and interests
  • Analyze current educational and professional skills for career advancement
  • Explore career options and how they will achieve those goals
  • Discuss the importance of managing their career

Who Should Attend

The Symposium is open to City of Houston employees only. Employees who are particularly interested in managing their career development needs, with support from career professionals and/or academic counselors, are encouraged to attend.

Cost to Attend

Come learn for free! This is a complimentary training opportunity for City employees. Click the YELLOW button below to register for the Symposium. Participants must enroll in each workshop individually to complete registration for the event.


Tuesday, Nov. 28th, 8am-5pm

4501 Leeland Street

Houston, TX


Participating educational institutions with a current agreement with the City will distribute information materials to Symposium attendees, as well as extend counseling support on enrollment services and academic programs available to City employees.

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We Are the Center for Excellence

For questions about this event, please contact Samantha Barnes via email at Samantha.Barnes@houstontx.gov.