John

John graduated from James Madison University a few years ago with a BFA in Graphic Design. He landed his first design job at a small business which produces lightweight portable trade show displays and exhibits. This job gave him a wonderful start in the field, as he learned to deal directly with customers while designing the graphics for their displays.

Over time, however, he became frustrated with the lack of organization at the company. He also had a hard time focusing on his work, as it wasn't holding his attention. When his frustrations affected his motivation and work ethic, he decided to leave. After a few months he took a job as a contractor providing graphics support to the government. Although John is still at that job, he is finding the same frustrations as before – he gets bored and distracted very easily, and he reports that there is poor delegation and organization from the leadership.

John tells us, “My girlfriend suggested I try out Ability Potentials, and at first I wasn't very receptive of the idea, but I came around eventually. I had to figure out what it is that makes it so difficult for me to be happy and productive vocationally. I even had some predictions heading into the test, like ‘I bet I need to (1) get out of the office and (2) work with my hands.’ I thought back to some of the classes in college that I really enjoyed -- like sculpture -- where I was working with or creating something tangible and 3-dimensional. I also remembered how much I enjoyed playing with Legos as a child.

“After the test, some of my predictions were confirmed – most notably the need to work with something tangible, given my high score in Spatial Relationships Visualization. Coupled with this aptitude was a high score in Spatial Relationships Theory. I was very surprised to learn that these are the two core science/engineering aptitudes. I never really considered or put much effort into these paths during school, though I did enjoy physics and some math. I suppose I just enjoyed more the visual and free world of art.

“Underlying all of this is the fact that I am a strong Specialist. This indicates that: I need to be dedicated to what I do; my success and failures need to be in my own hands; and my field should allow for some independence and freedom. I totally agree with this, and I can point directly at my frustrations at work currently as proof of these statements. “

“The cool part is that there are many career paths that incorporate both art and engineering, as well as Idea Productivity and Concept Organization, two other aptitudes where I scored high. Welding is one career I’ve considered. That seems to be a far cry from the world of graphic design, but it can have artistic elements and it is a profession requiring expertise and skill.”

“So, I'm really hoping soon to find whatever it is I can specialize in. I don’t think I'm too far off in my current profession, but there definitely needs to be some change. Whether it's owning my own business, or finding a way to just get out of the office and have some freedom, there are some small steps I can take. I'm so thankful for what Ability Potentials has brought to light, and I hope to capitalize on it and become who I really want to be!”

Read Tom's Story