After working inside the home for 20 years doing volunteer work such as teaching nursery school art classes, Betsy Payne realized she wanted to use her skills to give back to the community. She took a small business entrepreneurial course that created Fairchild Educational Services, offering assessment and remedial sessions for school-aged children. This led to the completion of her Adult Education Diploma from StFX University.
In 1996, the Job Resource Centre opened in Windsor. Betsy was employed as a Trainer and focused on mentoring people in job searching. The centre joined with Open for Business and moved to a larger facility called the Enterprise Centre of Hants County. It was with this centre that Betsy helped formulate the 4E Service Delivery Model: employment, education, entrepreneurship, and economic development.
She was one of the first, outside the Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) Centre, trained to deliver Portfolio Development. She became a Certified Myers Briggs Type Indicator MBTI (Level 2) facilitator, delivered the Strong Interest Inventory, Train the Trainer, Appreciative Inquiry, and was a counsellor for the self-employed.
Job Search Equation
Betsy’s Emotional intelligence training led to her interest in psychology and how to make people aware of the power of words and attitudes and how to reframe these into positives. Betsy patented her “Job Search Equation.” It means that what people really want, regardless of age, is employment that provides connection, community, money, stimulation, learning and meaning.
When the economy experienced a downturn in 2008, Betsy started learning about the stresses that affect people and researching compassion fatigue. She wanted to stay in the profession but wanted to find a way to help career practitioners maintain their balance while effectively helping the unemployed. Since then, Betsy has continued to be a strong advocate for awareness and training about compassion fatigue.
Betsy had many heroes that influenced her work, Lynn Bezanson of CCDF (Canadian Career Development Foundation); Nick Corcidilis, Ask the Headhunter; Lea Brovadani, Emotional Intelligence; Francois Mathieu, Compassion Fatigue; Judy MacKay, Job Junction; and the NSCDA’s Cathy Casey.
In terms of professional development, Betsy has always been the voice for the value of professional networking and continuous learning. She attended the first NSCDA conference in Shearwater and has strongly supported professional certification, sitting on focus groups to develop the program and tools. Betsy was the second career practitioner to gain her CCDP designation, and the second practitioner to become a certified Assessor as part of the first group of assessors in the NSCDA Competency Assessment training.
Mental Health Champions
Betsy was the impetus for the NSCDA’s interest and work in mental health. The creation of the Mental Health Champions initiative started when she asked in 2009, “Is it just me? 80% of my clients disclose mental health issues, and I am not sure I am equipped to deal with this. What can we do?”
Training Through Learner’s Eyes
After retiring from the Job Resource Centre in 2015, Betsy continued to work as an Assessor for the NSCDA’s Certification program, helped the NSCDA develop and deliver services for older workers and travelled the province delivering compassion fatigue workshops. She helped the NSCDA frame training through learners’ eyes and continues to inspire us with her connection with people.
When asked why she did it, Betsy says she always wanted to encourage people to say yes to themselves. Say yes to their dreams and find a process that will lead them forward. That’s what career development is, isn’t it?