Job shadowing is a career exploration tool that involves spending time with a professional or an experienced worker at their place of employment so you can see what they do first hand. At the end of the job shadow, you are likely to have gathered valuable first hand career information and be in a better position to decide if an occupation is right for you.

How to organize a job shadow

Step one: Identify a career(s) that you want to learn more about. For e.g. Office Administrator

Step two: Think of individuals that you know who do this kind of work or organizations in your community that would employ these types of workers. For e.g. schools, medical offices or government buildings.

Step three: Contact these individuals and/or organizations and indicate you are a career explorer who is looking for an opportunity to job shadow and ask if you could arrange a time.

Tips for a successful job shadow

  • Confirm exact times and location, arrive at least 10 minutes early.
  • Dress appropriately for the work site, as though you wanted to get a job there.
  • Educate yourself about the organization and career as much as possible ahead of time.
  • Prepare questions before you arrive.
  • Take a pad and paper to make notes.
  • Turn off your cell phone and keep it put away unless there is an emergency.
  • Gather contact information from the people you meet at your shadow.
  • Thank everyone who was involved in your experience.

If you would like to find out what career(s) could be a good fit for you, you might be interested in: