Getting stuck in a job where you cannot reach your full potential can lead to a lot of unwanted stress and insecurity for many people. We’re here to remind you that you don’t get stuck and it is entirely possible to move to a different industry, field, or position.
Perhaps you have lost interest in your current job or you have discovered a new interest in another area. Regardless of the reason, the decision to switch careers is life changing. To be successful in anything you do, you must make the change right.
If you’re considering a career change but don’t know where to start, here’s what to do:
1. Discover what you really enjoy
The last thing you want is to go through the career change process to get into an industry that you don’t like.
List your likes, dislikes, values, and interests. Identify exactly what makes you leave the company about your current job – and avoid career paths that could pose the same obstacles.
For some people, this could be the hardest step. Figuring out what you really enjoy and what you are passionate about after ignoring it for years is not an easy task.
Ask yourself, “What am I looking forward to?” or “What do I think about in my spare time?” Choose a career related to your answers to these questions.
2. List careers that satisfy your passions
When you are comfortable with some of your passions and interests, start looking for careers that include these things.
For example, if you spend a lot of time thinking about or hanging out with your dog, consider a career involving animals.
The important part of this step is keeping an eye on your skills as well. Just because you like dogs doesn’t mean you have the expertise or skills needed to become a veterinarian.
However, if your skills include marketing, writing, and designing, you might consider working as a marketing specialist for a wildlife agency or dog kennel.
The trick is to Combine your skills with your passion to create your ideal position and go from there.
3. Research the careers that created your list
Once you have your list of dream careers, start researching. The greater the industry change, the more research you should do. If you are looking to make a worthwhile, informed decision, this may be the most important step.
Think about the years of research and training you had before you took up your current position. Can you imagine how difficult it would have been to adjust without all of this information?
Prepare for success by learning as much as you can before applying for a job.
4. Make the decision
You’ve mapped out your interests, listed careers related to them, and researched them all – now it’s time to make up your mind.
Making a decision is important as it will determine the further course of your professional change process. You need to determine a specific industry or career that you want to get into in order to achieve this goal.
5. Develop a plan of action
Once you’ve decided on the next path, develop a specific plan with measurable goals, action items, and a timeline.
There are likely new skills to learn, professionals that you should meet and work to get your current job done. You may even have some personal goals that you want to work on during this shift.
Jumping from career to career isn’t a random step – you don’t want to take it lightly. The more detailed your plan, the greater the chance that you will find your dream job quickly.
6. Customize your personal brand
When you give someone your business card or invite them to review your online portfolio, they should be able to tell what industry you’re in now – not your previous area.
In this step, you’ll need to customize your resume, cover letter, and portfolio as much as possible so that potential employers know you are all on it. If you edit your own professional brand so that it has more to do with the new industry, they will see your commitment in this aspect.
You can consider using Resumonk to create a functional or competency-based resume. Show what transferable skills you learned in your previous job and how they apply to the new industry.
7. Start the network in your desired area
Every professional field is not just about what you know, but also about who you know.
begin Participation in networking events for your industry and meet as many people as possible. Introduce yourself and say that you are now starting to invade the field.
This is a great opportunity to ask seasoned professionals for their tips or advice on how to get into the industry and be successful. People love to talk about themselves, their stories, and their success so that they will remember you asked.
8. Update your workout
As you learn more about your new area of expertise, you may find that you need to broaden your horizons significantly.
Start slowly and only take a class or two at a time. Not only will this be difficult to juggle with your current position, but it will also help you confirm that you are genuinely interested in the area.
If getting a job locally isn’t required, you may not feel the need to get a new degree or certification for your career change – that’s fine. A couple of classes might be enough to get you started and meet people who have been in the field for years.
9. Find a mentor
As you make this transition, you will find yourself stressed and insecure at times. A The mentor can help you keep track of things and remember the bigger picture.
You don’t have to be an incredibly successful, rich, or powerful person to be an adequate guide for you during this time. However, it certainly wouldn’t hurt if they had experience in your new industry.
10. Start the job search
Recall all of the skills you learned about finding a job in your senior year. Browse through your cover letter templates, interview tips and negotiation strategies.
Remember the importance of doing thorough research on companies before applying, interviewing, and especially before accepting a position.
It’s also important to remember that job hunting is really a chase – it won’t happen overnight. Try not to think about it too much and trust that the right position will come for you.
11. Keep learning about your new field
Do some research on your new career to keep yourself distracted while you wait for a response from the seemingly endless number of applications you have filled out.
As mentioned earlier, when it comes to breaking into a new industry, knowledge is power. The more you know how to get into your new job, the less you will have to adjust on that first day.
12. Lose the ego – you are back on the first place
Back to the bottom of the totem pole! Don’t think about taking on entry-level positions just because you’ve been employed for 10 years – or longer.
You are just starting out in this industry so you will most likely have to start at the very bottom, especially if this is a big move from your previous position.
Be flexible, eager, and ready to start over.
Your new career is waiting
Making a career change is not an easy task. It takes a lot of strength, courage, willpower and determination to be successful. Use this guide to help you along the way, no matter how much your industry is changing.
When the stress comes your way, just inhale and remind yourself that good things come to those who are hectic.
p.s. With Resumonk you can create a nice résumé and cover letter in a few minutes. Stand out from the crowd and multiply your chances of getting your dream job.