It’s a familiar feeling for some: you’re stuck in a rut with your current role and feel like the only way out is a change of scenery and total change of career. Sometimes these rash thoughts are just that; rash and over-the-top.
The grass always looks greener, but it’s not always the case. Changing careers can be a liberating and exciting experience, but also a scary one, so you need to make sure that you’re doing the right thing.
That said, I’ve come up with six handy things to consider that will may help you if you really are desperate to make that big change.
1) Think About Why You Want To Switch
So you’re feeling disillusioned with your role and just want to quit, right? Well make sure you’re not making a snap decision that you will regret in the future.
What are the reasons for wanting to change careers? Has there been a change in the workforce, management, location or pay? Then it might not be a total career change you need. Maybe you just need to voice your concerns to your manager and come to some sort of compromise.
Or if you’re just bored in your current role, or have been there too long, it might not be a total career change you need, but just a new job in a similar role somewhere else. However, if you have lost interest in your role and responsibilities, this should set off warning bells that you might be in need of a completely new challenge.
2) Consider Existing Skills
If you really want to change careers, make sure you think about the type of skills you have that you can transfer to a different job area or industry.
For example, if you have good communication and technical skills and are currently a PR Executive, you could maybe consider a Social Media Manager job.
To avoid having to start from scratch in a new industry, try and make your existing skills work in your favour by applying them to different situations than you are used to, and you may be surprised with the new career options that pop up.
3) Identify What You Want
Think about the aspects of your current role that you like and dislike, and use these to figure out the type of career that will suit your working style.
For example, if you are currently working alone and feel like you would prefer to be part of a team, or are seeking more flexibility than is currently possible, make sure you look for careers where this is possible. Otherwise, it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack!
Also, consider whether you could make these changes to your existing job, which would avoid the stress of switching careers. Approach your manager with your concerns and see what the company can do to accommodate your needs.
4) Prepare To Become A Junior
If you’re definitely going to change careers, you will most probably have to start from the bottom and work your way up again.
Before you take the inevitable pay-cut that comes with moving back down the ranks, consider the responsibilities you have and what a pay cut would mean to them.
Say you have a family that you support financially, is it feasible to take a pay cut and how will it affect them?
Make sure you do a lot of research into the new career you are hoping to embark on before you start applying for jobs.
Speak to people already in the job sector by connecting on LinkedIn or chatting on Twitter. This way you can see if this role is for you or if you would experience the same problems you encountered in your current job.
6) Give Good Reasons For Your Career Change
When applying for jobs, make sure you explain in your cover letter or on your CV why you are looking to change careers and how your skills are transferable.
Hiring managers will be concerned about a seemingly random change of career, so it’s important to outline the reasons why before they start asking questions about your suitability for the role.
Saying that you are bored in your current role and just fancy a change is not a valid reason for changing careers. Needing the prospect of progress within a company and wanting to be challenged and feel valued is a good reason.
So there we go, a few handy hints if you’re considering making a drastic career change. Have these been useful, or have I missed anything out?