Your 5 Step Career Change Success Plan
Is the thought of making a career change frightening to you? If you have been working at your current job for the past 10+ years you are probably questioning if making a career change is the right thing to do at this point. It can be scary to take such a big step when you have been secure at your current job for quite some time. The thing about it is, if you feel the need to make some type of career change then it is most likely time to do so.
Step #1: Make a List of Likes and Dislikes
You need to ask yourself what it is you actually like about your job. How long have you been contemplating this career change? If it has been longer than a year, there are some very practical likes or reasons why you have not made any significant changes to your current job. What are those reasons? What is it about your current job that you are unsatisfied with? For you to be seriously considering making a career change after all this time there must be something unsettling to you. What is it? Make a list of likes and dislikes to answer these questions.
Step #2: Analyze Your Perception
Sometimes you do not have to get a completely different job or leave your current company. Sometimes all that is needed is a little change in perspective about what it is you are currently doing and what it is you wish to be doing. Is what you are desiring something that might be of value to your current employer? Have you been working in one capacity that is very similar to the job you want? Consider your transferable skills. A great example of this would be a school teacher who decides they want to become a school administrator or principle. Teachers know what it takes to manage a group of people because they do it each day in their classrooms. Teachers also know a great deal about education because it is their job to be informed about their industry. Although someone might be currently working as a teacher, with a little bit more education, they might already have the skills and experience the need to become a principle if they choose to. Do not overwhelm yourself with all that you might have to do because it may not be as much work as you are thinking. Simply ask yourself how much effort you will actually have to put into making your career change a reality and then make a to- do list of everything you will have to do.
Step #3: Do Some Research and Network
Some handy websites and online resources you should consider while doing some initial research would be www.Indeed.com, Salary.com, and Occupational Outlook Handbook. Use these tools to research the type of education and training you need, projected job growth, and salary information. This will help you to further expand and clarify your to-do list even further. Once you have done your research find a local trade organization or school that is relevant to your selected career path. Get in contact with someone who can give you more insight into the career you are researching. Be sure to ask them what they like and dislike about their job to get a balanced opinion about your desired profession. If you know anyone who is already in the industry you wish to enter then be sure to ask them questions as well.
Step #4: Take Some Relevant Courses
This is a great idea to expand your existing network around the job you are interested in. Taking relevant classes will also help you gauge your interest in the work you are perusing and help further ensure you are making the best decision. The great thing about courses is that sometimes you discover other jobs and titles in the industry that you might not have considered before. This could lead to some other ideas that you had not considered or were unaware of at first. Relevant course work can also help boost your resume and even lead to a letter of recommendation and other opportunities from any instructors you make a connection with.
Step #5: Try on the Job First
This final step takes a little bit more effort than the other steps in some way but is well worth it. Can you shadow someone at their job or even do some sort of internship or volunteer program that is relevant to the career you are currently pursuing? The answer to this question is yes. You just need to figure out how you are going to do it. Do you have enough vacation time to take some time off for a brief internship? This could be anywhere from a few weeks to a few days if you just want to shadow someone. Can you make the commitment to volunteer a few hours each week after work or on the weekends? The answers to these questions depends on your schedule but you should seriously consider this step. You never know where this might lead and this is also great experience you can list on your resume.
Once you have completed all of these steps, you will be in a good position to really make the decision about whether or not a career change is really what you want. If you are fearful about anything, the best thing you can do is start taking action.
Through action you will discover more about yourself and what it is you are trying to accomplish.
Feel free to comment below with any questions you have about making your career change.
The Career Reinvention Coach
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