You’re doing well in your career and love the industry you’re in. Or you might be stuck in a rut and bored to tears. Whatever your situation, you may be tussling with a niggling thought in the back of your mind. Is it time to change life with a career switch?
People change careers for many reasons and at various stages.
But before you take the leap, remember that this big step deserves serious consideration, so you make the right decision at the right time and in the right way.
This expert article walks you through important considerations relating to a career change.
Is it time to self-reflect?
This is the time to self-reflect. This will clarify why you want to change careers. Armed with the answers, you will be in a more confident space to make the right decision.
This is also a perfect time to talk to a recruiter, mentor, coach or another professional.
So why change careers?
You need to figure out why you want to change careers, and there may be more than one reason.
Ponder these questions. Are you:
- unhappy in your current job (if so, why)
- wanting to seek work-life balance
- keen on exciting new work, in a new industry with a new team
- eager to stretch your skills and mindset
- wanting more money and benefits
- seeking a position that better aligns with your values
- determined to make a meaningful contribution to the world
- looking to exercise different skills in a rewarding way
- wanting opportunities to advance?
As you can see, there are oodles of reasons. Whatever you do, don’t switch for the sake of it or on a whim.
What industry to you want to switch to?
While now is the time to look at new industries, don’t cast your net so wide you end up paralysed.
Research roles online and talk to a recruiter. face2face Recruitment’s services are free to candidates at all levels and across Australia. Every day we’re exposed to a high volume of role types across all industries. We can help you narrow your focus to your top three industries and position types.
We’re experts at asking questions that will position you to take full advantage of both your hard and soft skills. Together we’ll assess:
- your strengths
- what culture you align with
- what energises you
- the personality traits you want to leverage.
Be clear on your transferrable skills
As expert recruiters, we’ll also help you identify—and this is important—the transferrable skills to highlight when seeking new opportunities.
Remember, you’re not starting from scratch. Instead, you’re taking full advantage of your existing experience and skills.
A large percentage of employers are prepared to train on hard or technical skills. What they want are transferrable skills their organisation can benefit from but can’t teach or build so easily.
Some examples might be soft skills such as:
- teamwork in fast-paced environments
- communications (oral and written and inspiring)
- stakeholder relations (internal and external)
- time management in high-volume work areas
- fresh perspective on problem solving.
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Develop an action plan
With an action plan, your approach will be methodical and systematic. You’ll move toward this exciting new phase with consideration and purpose.
The action plan doesn’t have to be complex. It can even take the form of a practical checklist.
There’s loads to prepare. Being organised will give you confidence and enable you to move quickly.
Incorporate into your action plan, practical tasks such as:
- updating your LinkedIn profile, resume, cover letter
- thinking about the referees you’ll use when applying for new positions
- tidying up your social media platforms
- deciding if you need to upskill in any areas
- researching courses to take (even short, free, online ones)
- making appointments to speak to experts in new industries.
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Position yourself for challenges
It’s essential to get your head wrapped around the challenges you might well face in switching careers. Therefore:
- keep your confidence and conviction levels up, even if things don’t happen immediately
- be patient, remembering that looking for work in a new industry is challenging (in a good way)
- never fear what others think—if you’ve self-reflected, talked to professionals, and taken time to prepare, you’ll get there
- remember it’s normal to get a case of the jitters when nothing seems to be happening.