Good form of exercise while making some additional money and you are your own boss of sorts. You have a schedule but you can also work at your own pace as long as you get done by said end time.
Career switching is becoming a choice for many different people for a number of different reasons. For some, it is because they have been in the same career for most of their professional life and they are bored or find that they are stagnant and have no where to grown any further; they are at a dead end. Others may find that their chosen career isn't what they thought it would be and it doesn't bring them the happiness and fulfillment they thought it would. Some may be out of a job and are having a hard time finding another in the same line of work.
Whatever your reason, if you’re considering switching careers but have serious doubts on whether you can score a job in a different industry, the following handy tips will smooth out the bumps along your career highway.
1.) Self Evaluation
Look deep within yourself to see why you want to make a career change. Ask the all important question, should I change industries? Identify what's making you unhappy in your current position. Is it something that can be easily fixed? For example are you not getting along with your co-workers, or your boss? You could rectify this by changing departments or looking for another job with another similar employer, in which case, you don't need to switch industries. You’re simply in the wrong department or at the wrong company. Maybe you disagree ethically with your industry, for instance maybe you work in an industry that makes something that harms the environment. Perhaps this is now the time to re-evaluate your own values and see if they marry up to the industry you are working in.
Assess your skills, training and areas of expertise.
What are your drives, your passions, your strengths? What gives you a sense of satisfaction? What makes you happy? What are your core values? What sort of personality do you have? A good tip is to recall what you enjoyed doing as a child or as a teen or even now in your volunteer roles. It will point you in the direction of what you are passionate about. If you hit a brick wall, ask those who know you best, your family, your best friends, or your colleagues. Back this up with a couple of online career quizzes and personality/aptitude tests or meet with a career counsellor. Once you have a clear sense of self, you can move forward.
Sure, you want to switch to another industry. But is it the right move, or will it mean professional harakiri five years down the line? Here’s where it pays (quite literally) to do your groundwork, learn the industry and gain valuable insights. Do your research to see which industries are in demand and which are stagnating. For instance, jobs in specialty aged care have been on an up-swing for the past decade.
Once you have zeroed in on a particular industry, find out more. Are there relevant job vacancies? Is there an opportunity for career progression? What sort of training is required? Join a few LinkedIn Groups or professional associations in the industry, follow key people’s profiles, read and comment on their posts. It’s important to immerse yourself and become an active participant.
3.) Update Your Skills
If you’re worried that you will have to go through the entire process of requalifying only to start at the bottom rung, remember that you are able to leverage your transferable skills. Assess your worth and marketability to prospective employers. Employers often look at your past experience and abilities to see how well you could adapt and apply these skills to your new role. Take your transferable skills with you to your new job and use them to your advantage.
Quite often you will need to gain relevant qualifications or update your current qualifications. There are online courses that allow you to work on your qualifications before you leave your paying job. So if you are wanting to move into a new industry, you have the advantage of specific industry qualifications on top of your previous experience and skills. It’s the perfect way to bridge the skills gap and be on top of your game.
Although what you know is very important, times like this, it's also who you know. Now's the time to open those lines of communication. Finding out about job opportunities, qualifications and training requirements, the day-to-day details of the position is now your focus, your current role. Make LinkedIn and similar social networks your closest friend.
Talk to people in the industry. Let your contacts know you’re available, ready and willing to switch industries. Pick up the phone and make a few calls. Networking opportunities present themselves all the time, so be prepared with pertinent questions.
You may need to adopt different and creative job search techniques to develop expertise and persuade the right people in your new profession that you belong among them. When you’re changing careers, automatically you’re not a member of the tribe. You’re joining another tribe. To build relationships in the field you aspire to join, go to conferences and join professional associations. The idea is to start putting yourself out there in this new tribe. Seek out a mentor, preferably someone in the industry you want to move into.
Don’t burn your bridges with ex-bosses and colleagues
You never know when your paths might cross again, and their network can work in your favor.
5.) Update Your Resume
Many job seekers think of their resumes as exact chronicles of their experiences. That’s not helpful for a career changer. Think of your resume instead as an ad disguised as a history of your past. Figure out what the hiring manager most wants and tailor your document to match. Highlight your transferable skills. You have the power to highlight whatever bullets you want to for every career you’ve ever had.
Remember to highlight soft skills and abilities on your resume, while networking, and of course, when you’re at a job interview. For example, if you’ve worked in print media and have excellent editorial skills, but you wish to switch industries to community services, you should draw attention to these communication skills to work on a not-for-profit organization’s social media, press releases, newsletters, and digital marketing.
6.) New Interview Language.
You may have to answer questions about why you're switching careers during job interviews. Prepare a positive answer in advance. For example, you may say something like, “I wanted something that was a great fit for me, and these are the reasons why I will be a great fit for this role.” Instead of saying you regret the work choices you made in the past, simply explain that you learned a lot. Make it clear you know why you’re there. You’re serious and you’ve thought this through. It’s part of a career strategy.
7.) Be Confident.
Changing careers requires taking risks and making yourself vulnerable. It’s natural to be nervous, but wallowing in fear can hinder your progress. Get comfortable with your new goals. Even if hunting for work has been difficult for you in the past, commit yourself fully to carrying out your career change plan and build confidence in yourself. Having real clarity about what you’re after is going to make a big difference in the job search.
When you do decide to take the plunge and switch industries, make sure your cover letter, resume and LinkedIn profile are tailored to this change. You might not have the perfect skill set, but highlight your transferable skills, and a willingness to learn on the job. Put your networking skills to good use and volunteer your services at industry-specific organizations. Sometimes, the reality is far different to what you pictured, so it helps to try the hands-on approach.
Don’t let fear hold you back from switching industries. You’ve done the research, now go get that job.
Career switching is becoming a choice for many different people for a number of different reasons. For some, it is because they have been in the same career for most of their professional life and they are bored or find that they are stagnant and have no where to grown any further; they are at a dead end. Others may find that their chosen career isn't what they thought it would be and it doesn't bring them the happiness and…