How to Go About a Career Change
A successful career change can mean many things. It could mean moving into a new industry, taking on a new role or managerial position, or simply relocating to a new company. Whatever the case may be, making a mid-career transition can be both exciting and daunting.
Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re thinking of making a change:
Consider Your Motivation
Before making any decisions, it’s important to take a step back and ask yourself why you’re considering a career change in the first place. Is it because you’re unhappy in your current role? Feeling stagnant or unchallenged? Or maybe you’re simply ready for something new. Knowing your motivation for making a change will help you set realistic expectations and make the right decision for you.
Do Your Research
If you’ve decided that a career transition is what you need, the next step is to do your research. What are the skills and experience required for the roles or industries you’re interested in? What are the common challenges faced by people making a similar transition? The more information you have, the better prepared you’ll be to make a successful transition.
Build Your Network
Your network is one of your most valuable assets, so don’t underestimate its importance when making a career change. Talk to people who are already working in the field or industry you’re interested in and see if they have any advice or insights to share. Attend relevant conferences or meetups, and connect with people on social media. The bigger your network, the easier it will be to make a successful transition.
Look Within Your Current Company
Even if you are planning a big switch—from Sales to Project Management, for instance—your current employer may be the best place to start looking. Career experience at the company will hold more weight within the company and your manager/HR may be willing to work with you to make this transition. They may be more willing to take a risk and try you out in a new position.
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UPDATE YOUR RESUME & LINKEDIN PROFILE
Once you’ve decided on a direction, it’s time to start updating your resume and LinkedIn profile accordingly. Tailor your resume to highlight the skills and experience that are relevant to the roles or industries you’re interested in, and update your LinkedIn profile accordingly. This will help make sure that potential employers or recruiters take notice when you apply for jobs or reach out to them directly. Here is how:
1. Research the role or industry that you are applying to
The first step in tailoring your resume is to research the role or industry that you are applying to. This will help you identify the skills and experience that are most relevant to the role or industry and ensure that your resume includes these elements. You can research the role or industry by reading job descriptions, conducting informational interviews with professionals in the field, or reading articles or books about the topic.
2. Identify which skills and experience from your resume are most relevant
Once you have done your research, take a close look at your resume and identify which skills and experiences from your career are most relevant to the role or industry that you are targeting. If you have a lot of experience that is not relevant, you may want to consider leaving it off of your resume altogether. For example, if you are applying for a sales position, there is no need to include information about the administrative assistant roles that you held early in your career.
3. Highlight these skills and experiences in your resume
Once you have identified the skills and experiences that are most relevant, it is time to highlight them in your resume. Make sure to include them prominently on your resume so that they will not be missed by potential employers. One way to do this is by including a “Skills” section on your resume where you list all of the skills that are relevant to the role or industry. Alternatively, you can also incorporate these skills into the descriptions of your previous roles. For example, if you are applying for a marketing position, make sure to include information about any marketing campaigns that you spearheaded in your previous roles.
By tailoring your resume to each individual role or industry, you will increase your chances of getting called in for an interview and ultimately landing the job that you want. So take the time to tailor your resume to your career change goals.
BE PREPARED FOR ROADBLOCKS & SETBACKS
Making a successful career change takes time, effort, and persistence. There will inevitably be roadblocks along the way, so it’s important to be prepared for them and stay focused on your goal. If you encounter a setback, don’t get discouraged—simply adjust your course and keep moving forward until you achieve the success you’re looking for.
DON’T RUSH THIS – YOU CAN GET HELP TOO
Consider going slowly with big changes. If you have a marketing position but yearn to do something with hands-on creativity, consider working on projects at your current employer to get experience . Work on this during evenings and weekends, until you have a clear sense if it’s sustainable and fulfilling. Also, there are strategies you can implement at your current job to help ensure your next job change will be successful. Consider what you can do right now that may not be a part of your job description today that gives you experience for tomorrow and talk to your manager about adding it to your current responsibilities. As long as you are getting your work done and are effective in the role for which you were hired, a lot of managers will help you grow professionally.
Benefits of Career Coaching Packages
A mid-career transition can be both exciting and daunting, but with proper planning and preparation it can also be immensely rewarding. Keep these tips in mind as you begin exploring your options so that you can set yourself up for success. Consider getting some help or working with a professional to work through some of the strategy and planning you will face. One of the benefits of career coaching packages is that they usually include one-one time with an expert who can support you.
Your years of professional experience are an advantage, and not a shortcoming. Your lived experience is meaningful and can and will inform your future new career, even if it’s a departure from what you were working on previously.
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