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school leavers with no career direction

School-Leaver with No Career Direction? Why It’s Okay.

It can be daunting for school-leavers approaching the end of their high-school years, especially those without a clear plan or career path. But having no direction as a teenager can work in your favour. Here’s why.

Matt Purcell, Life Coach and Inspirational Speaker, says it’s okay to take your time. “Many young people respond to the expectations of others and rush their decision. It’s important to be true to yourself. Always remember you have the right to question anybody and everything,” says Purcell.

Purcell encourages young people to use his GPV Framework to get specific and seek feedback about the practicalities of career options. “Grab numbers and contacts from your careers adviser. Be brave and call someone in the field you’re interested in to ask them questions about the job using this framework,” he says.

“Young people need self-awareness and to question what they have been taught. They need help to discover (their future) outside the conditioning and expectations of their parents and formal educators.”


The GPV Framework

The GPV Framework encourages self-reflection and may require seeking experiences and feedback from peers and networks.

G for “Gifts”

P for “Passions”

V for “Values”


Gifts prompts you to consider your strengths. It’s best to start with what you’re good at.

What is your personality?

Do you like working in a team or solo?

What are you not so good at?

What are the things you’re great at, but don’t enjoy?

Do you like the outdoors?

What are your hobbies?


Passions is essentially asking, what do you care about?

Are there issues or communities in the world that resonate with you more than others?

What ticks you off about the world and makes you feel like you want to do something about it?

What needs aren’t being met in your city?

Do you, your family, or friends have interests that aren’t being met?


Values are all about your lifestyle and personality.

What is non-negotiable about the way you work?

If you value family time, working a 120-hour week is going to compromise that.

What are your personal boundaries?

Who and what matters more than work?


Find Your True Calling

The GPV framework has the potential to help young people find the right career. “Using your gifts towards something you are invested in, and in an environment that suits your values, will lead to your calling.”

“It’s not just about one thing. Many people make it about the money but 87 per cent of the world don’t find their job fulfilling, yet it pays them money. Sometimes we need a framework like this to help guide us in our self-discovery,” he says.


Study a Short Course to Try a Career

Before investing in an expensive tertiary degree or embarking on a traineeship, why not study a short course in an industry that interests you? There are hundreds of short courses available at Australian Online Courses that offer an excellent platform to further study or entry-level roles.