A career is a profession that often requires a particular education or training. It could also be a series of job experiences in a particular field. In addition, it could be the combination of educational background, training, and job experiences altogether. It is more of an objective mindset, setting up the path for the long term with goals to accomplish. More often, having a job doesn’t mean having a career. It becomes a career largely with vast knowledge, training, and experiences acquired on the journey. Transitioning into a new career could be a life-changing experience. This article will show how to transition into a new career.
There are several reasons why you may want to change your career or rather transition into another career. This may be entirely unrelated to your current field or in some situations in close relations with your current career. Whichever it is, it is really a big step to launch into another career completely. It is often more than not an uneasy undertaking.
1. Why People Transition Into A New Career?
Most people switch careers due to so many available factors. This may include
- pursuit for a higher remuneration rate,
- need for a better work balance and flexibility, or
- simply fading interest in career life.
These are all genuine factors that can actually reduce productivity.
2. How to Transition Into a New Career
There are various steps to follow when you feel or think it is time to change your career. You will find below significant steps that would ease the change into that new career you feel the pull towards.
2.1 Understand your skills, values, and personality
Understanding your aptitudes or abilities is the first key factor. You can gain this through education and field training. There are a lot of skillset. So, it is important you narrow down your skills as you acquire them. You should be aware that there are also transferable skills which are quite of personal strength and could be used in multiple fields or at any place at all.
Finally, your personality is an attribute that makes you unique, which forms distinct qualities and is important to recognize in choosing a fulfilling career path.
2.2 Make a career research
After assessing your skills, values, and personality, the next step is to research the career that is of interest to you. Your research should cover navigating through the different careers you have in mind. You need to understand the education level requirement, experiences required, and likely training. This will guide you to know if you would need additional training or would need to volunteer for a period of time in order to gain the first-hand experience.
Also, checking the compensation structure is another thing to check out. It will give you an idea of what the likely pay could be since one of the reasons many change careers is to have a pay upgrade. If your dream career would not meet your expectation financially, you could have a rethink and diverge into a career where you can put your strength to better use also.
2.3 Research occupation options
The next step is to draw up an initial list of possible occupations. This will help you to narrow down your choice of career. As you will probably find out, after understanding the core competencies you need for the different career choices, you might be faced with multiple career choices in relation to your strength. So, this research will help you to narrow down your options based on skills values, and personality.
2.4 Narrow down your list
Your research will show you that there is a need to create a list of possible occupational endeavors. In addition, there is need to narrow down the occupations on your list to different categories. This may seem to be more time-consuming, but it is a worthy exercise. Your research will effectively be usable here in order to cut down your list. For example, you can easily strike out some occupations that may require too many educational degrees or that may offer low income. Technology has made this process easier as well. So, use it.
2.5 Set up a plan
The next critical step is to set up a plan that will help you achieve your career goal. There are a few criteria you need to consider when setting up a career goal. You career goal needs to be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely). As you set your career goal, ensure that you have an actionable plan. It is important to begin with the short term goals. For example, your short term goal can be getting the basic training or probably volunteer experience in order to fulfil occupation requirement.
List out your goals and by each of them create a sub-list of steps you need to take in order to achieve them. Also, you might include likely obstacles you might face and then highlight how you intend to go past these obstacles. Finally, make room for flexibility in your plan. Your career plan should be a living document, dynamic enough to allow for changes whenever required.
2.6 Make a commitment to equip yourself
This is the step where you need to follow through on your plan. Having decided on your next career path, it is time to get down to work. Make a commitment to get the necessary knowledge and certifications. Getting this knowledge will give you the foundation to demonstrate your abilities in this new career path. In some cases, volunteering is the best way to acquire first-hand experience in the field. So, do everything to get the required knowledge and experience.
2.7 Finally, embrace your new career
The final step is to embrace your new career. At this stage, you already know if you are switching totally to a new industry or a different career entirely. Adjusting to the new reality may take time but the steps above would have prepared you for this. So, embrace this change and enjoy the new phase. Be ready to deal with the nervousness that comes with this final process.
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