Häkkinen has noticed, both in her work and in her research, that when a global crisis causes societal insecurity, career counselling is expected to have an increasingly strong impact especially from the viewpoint of the national economy. However, that's when the viewpoint of the individual gets easily forgotten.
“The profitability of career counselling, too, is being tied to economic indicators, and this raises the question of whether all elements of good life can be measured in money alone. And if the answer is yes, where will that lead us?”
This is why Häkkinen calls for a more precise definition of what career counselling actually is.
“Unfortunately, it seems that career counselling professionals are seen merely as those who keep the economy going. Yet, pushing people into the labour market as quickly and efficiently as possible is not what our professional identity is solely based on.”
Career counselling that only focuses on the individual’s abilities, skills or self-design is not socially sustainable – not from the viewpoint of the individual, nor ecologically.
Indeed, determining the goals and objectives of career counselling, besides those that serve labour market needs, is currently a hot topic in the field.
“Could career counselling also have an educational mission where we could together think about the building blocks of good life also outside the context of work?”