Whether you were recently ‘let go’ or you are simply ready for a new challenge in your career, working towards a new career can be an exciting time. Maybe you’ve lost passion for your work, experienced a change in priorities, or your current job is negatively impacting your mental/physical health. Regardless of what it may be, your happiness is a large part of your success, and forging a new path is your opportunity to pursue new interests and revitalize your career. When the time comes to venture after new goals and job opportunities, you will find that passion and accrued momentum will carry you a long way. No matter where you are at in your career, following these three steps will make your career change a successful one:
“The only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.” -Steve Jobs.
Identify Your Transferrable Skills
Pinpoint your job search and map out your transferable skills on paper. Your transferable skills refer to your abilities and work experience applied in a new job or industry. Although they are refined throughout your career, these skills are independent of a specific function and firmly established in who you are as a professional. Some key examples you need to showcase to potential employers include Communication Skills, Analytical Skills, Project Management, Leadership Skills, Teamwork, Critical Thinking, and Adaptability. To demonstrate these abilities, the career experts at Northeastern University emphasize that your cover letter should not be a reiteration of your resume but rather a detailed synopsis. The thoughts and time you pour into your cover letter will play a significant role in presenting yourself as the best candidate.
Why is now the time for a new job? Why are you scared to begin a new career? The career experts at The Muse recommend writing out your responses to these two questions and placing them somewhere you will see them every day.
Capitalize on Your Network
Whether through kind words, career advice, or setting up new connections in your industry, you may never discover how close you are to your next career until you enlist in support of others. Through your friends, family, peers, and superiors, you will be surprised at how far they will go to see you succeed. After all, they likely expect the same of you or have experienced similar support in the past.
“Fear can’t hit a moving target.” – Todd Herman.
Although the pandemic still has a firm grip on specific networking opportunities, there are ways you can meet with your connections or even create new ones. If there are no networking events near you, start searching for networking webinars or educational webinars in your preferred industry where you can make an introduction. Another alternative is to get in touch with your LinkedIn connections and request a phone call or informational interview conducted over Zoom/Skype. People often are willing to help when they are sought after, so take advantage of it. Even if the individual cannot help you directly, they may connect you with someone better suited for your aspirations and open the door to new opportunities.
Take the Bold Leap
Living in the constant fear of change is sabotaging your success by merely doing nothing. Choosing to begin a new career or job can be difficult, but you will have no need to panic if you follow these principles. Trust your gut instinct, and don’t fear making the small, often unavoidable mistakes along the way. Hesitation will derail the progress you’ve made and indicates that you are not holding tight to your vision.
You may be just a few steps away from transforming your life and finding the success you long for. If you don’t try, you’ll never find out. If you fear the notion of stalling out and hitting a stand-still for your career, set a cap on the number of months you are willing to go or the amount you will spend before you look to change course again. At worst, you will still be rewarded with important life lessons you can hold onto forever.
Don’t let go of your inquisitive nature as you venture on this new path. Striving toward new interests and reinventing yourself can be a great feeling. Your appetite for learning and mastering new skills will carry you to success within any company, industry, or position. Don’t fear or hesitate; accompanying change is in your favor.